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It’s All For The Birds

BirdNest     Wild birds love to make nests out of bits of fabric, wool, twigs, etc. Have you ever discovered a nest full of colorful bits of cloth or ribbon? It is always an exciting find, especially for children. It is as if the mother bird was decorating her handmade home for her new babies.

One way you can help this decorating process along is to leave colorful nest-making supplies out in the garden for the wild birds to find. You never know when you might discover bits of those items in a hidden nest later in the season.

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If you have a friend who knits or crafts with natural fibers, ask them to save their scraps for you — just little snips of ribbon, yarn, silk or wool that they cut off the ends of their projects. My sister knits silk scarves and she saves all of her silk clippings for me. Any long strands should be cut up further so that you are only left with tiny pieces.

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Take those colorful bits and place them in a wire basket, mesh bag or other container and set them outside in the garden. I use an old galvanized chicken feeder for some of my bits.

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Then hide the container somewhere for the birds to discover. Of course, I keep my nest-supply chicken feeder far away from my pet garden chickens because they would just eat the fibers! That would not be good!

Then, later in the season, look for nests with the colorful bits. It is always a thrill to see the ribbons woven into a beautiful nest.

A touch of color can do wonders for all home decor – Don’t you think?

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About the Author:

Theresa Loe is the founder of Living Homegrown® and the Canning Academy® and is the Co-Executive Producer & Canning Expert on the national PBS gardening series, Growing A Greener World®. Theresa homesteads on just 1/10th of an acre in Los Angeles with her husband, two teenage boys and several disorderly but totally adorable chickens. Learn more about Living Homegrown here and about the Canning Academy here.

4 Comments:

  • Dee says:

    What an interesting idea and a great way to help the birds in your backyard.~~Dee

  • cindy says:

    i love it! i had a large wooly dog (kuvasz) and used to pile his fur for the birds to use, and i would spot nests around the property with the white fur puffing out.
    i’ve been coveting a ‘designer’ string ball, at this artists site, http://www.martinhouseart.com/martinhousegardenart.garden.htm – great post!

  • Teresa says:

    I think my comment got eaten by the computer gremlins (and if it didn’t, my apologies for posting twice).

    I’ve never tried to leave fibers out for the birds, but we do toss out our hair (we cut our own hair) outside, and we’ve discovered nests with our hair in them. Very sweet!

  • Oh Cindy! I want that string ball too. Very cool.

    Last year, I put a mesh bag of wool (from a sheep farmer) outside. The wool is great for nests because it is warm and waterproof. I found one nest with some in it. It looked toasty warm.

    Teresa – Those darn computer gremlins again!! Thanks for reposting. I never did find your first post.

    I love the hair idea. Had not thought of that! Hair can be composted too, but I like the idea of finding it in a nest much better. It can make you feel more connected to nature! Fun idea.

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