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Session to explore methods of attracting songbirds

Published 5:16pm Friday, July 12, 2013

Feeders are another resource available to people hoping to attract songbirds.

Different types of feeders include seed feeders and hummingbird feeders, which are filled with sugar water.

Cook said he would talk about how to properly maintain feeders in order to keep birds that visit them healthy.

For example, Cook said hummingbirds that consume sugar water left in a feeder for too long might become sick since the sugar and water mixture will eventually ferment.

Cook also advised against leaving feed that has gotten wet in the feeder.

Another option for attracting songbirds is to incorporate plants in the landscape providing food and a habitat for the birds.

Cook said tropical creeper plants are appealing to hummingbirds, as are flowering plants like azaleas.

Native shrubs, hollies and Crepe Myrtles work for songbirds as well, and hollies provide berries for them to eat in the winter.

Hollies are helpful in attracting Cedar Waxwings.

On the other hand, Cook said residents need to be careful not to plant invasive shrubs like Chinese Privet or Russian Olive.

Cook said most methods of attracting songbirds are inexpensive and don’t require many materials to implement.

Nest boxes can be made at home with pieces of wood and a saw.

“Anyone, even in an apartment building, can attract some sort of bird,” Cook said. “It doesn’t require a lot of money or a lot of effort. It’s just interesting for a lot of folks.”

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