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A note from UGA Extension
Attracting birds to your landscape
Ingram Sam
Sam Ingram

Turning one’s yard into a suitable habitat for birds is not difficult. Designing landscapes that provide birds with their five essential needs:





nesting sites

is what keeps birds in your yard long term. Some have called landscaping to create bird habitat birdscaping.

Planning a landscape that is suitable for birds is easy. Start by sketching the existing landscape. Make note of all structures, plantings, and topographical features. Make notes on your drawing of the plants to leave, to remove, or add keeping in mind that birds like edges such as forest and planting borders.

Choose areas to plant trees and shrubs that birds can utilize. Mix in plantings of annuals and perennials that flower throughout the season. These plants will attract insects that birds may feed on. Try to leave standing dead trees, if possible, to provide habitat for birds such as woodpeckers.

After choosing plants that provide food, shelter, and cover for birds, artificial features should be considered. Water sources such as birdbaths, fountains and ponds may be added to landscapes to attract birds. The features should be in the open away from any place cats and other predators can hide. Rocks and water plants add a to a water feature’s attractiveness to birds as well as keeping the water fresh.

Man made birdhouses can be installed. These should be placed in sheltered spots near a shrub or tree. Finally, birdfeeders can be added. All bird feeders should be placed in the open near some sort of cover. Baffles and guards should be placed on mounting poles of both birdfeeders and houses to prevent predation.

Attracting birds to one’s yard by birdscaping can be rewarding. Birds are not only beautiful and fun to watch, but also provide control of adult insects, grubs, and caterpillars. By improving suburban and urban landscapes, people can help replace bird habitat that has been reduced or destroyed by development.

For more information or questions contact Effingham Extension Agent Sam Ingram at or 754-8040.