Staten Island is home to many bird species that do not fly south for the winter. In order to survive the difficult winter months, they must have shelter and be able to take advantage of food sources. Food, shelter and a little bit of water is something that can easily be provided in the landscape and by doing so can provide you and your family hours of enjoyable birdwatching, a quite fulfilling hobby. Cardinals, blue birds, chickadees, sparrows, woodpeckers even finches are just some of the birds that reside in Staten Island.
To help out the local birds during the harsh winter months, one can start by hanging a tube-style bird feeder in their yard and filling it with fresh seed. A good technique is placing it on a Shepards hook away from the house and trees to ensure it is not raided by squirrels. Different types of birds prefer different types of seed. Thankfully Wiesner Bros. Nursery has an assortment of seed choices and suet to chose from. Suet is a high energy block containing a blend of seed, corn meal, dried insects, fruit and other valuable nutrients. Water is very important too! Bird bath heaters are not very expensive and a great way to make your birdbaths last all season.
Natural bird shelters could be as simple as planting evergreen trees or shrubs. Many of these plants can produce berries, seeds or even nuts which will add a natural food source. A wooden bird house would be a good addition to any yard. They can be securely fastened at a height of at least 6′ to avoid predators such as neighborhood cats. Position the shelter facing south to take the most advantage of solar heating from the winter sun. A great addition for the winter months would be a little insulation. This can be as easy as filling part of the house with wood chips, dry grass, straw or hay.
If you and unsure of where to start, Wiesner Bros Nursey stocks a variety of shelters, food sources and birdbaths, along with a friendly staff to help with any questions you may have. Three simple steps to a new hobby, enjoy!