“In these cold days, the birds and small animals that remain around the house and garden struggle to find food. In this dormant season, the birds are all that remain of the animated summer landscape. In return for our enjoyment of their beautiful colors and cheerful presence during these dark months, leave seed to help them through the winter.

Provide your local wild birds with most welcome, high-quality food supplements. Use large pinecones to create beautiful feeders for the winter garden. Tie a hanging string to the top of the cone, and then tightly pack its nooks and crannies with fresh peanut butter. Roll the cone in the birdseed and hang it from the eaves or tree limbs.  Then watch the birds feast.”  By Maureen Gilmer, 2001

When designing urban wildlife habitat, it is important to consider winter conditions to help support the birds that remain in our neighborhoods.  What kind of plantings will support birds and other beneficials creatures?  By creating an understory for birds to safely rest and observe, you invite wildlife to spend time in your urban yard in order to eat, to rest, to nest and other activities.  Planting vine maple, Pacific dogwood, or red alder provide necessary resting places for birds to reside.  And, this lovely, lush habitat also creates a magical garden space for spring and summer activities.  As M. Gilmer suggests, feeding birds is advantageous during “winter events’ like our recent snow storm (January 10/11, 2017).  During these white outs, the birds struggle to survive and require assistance – such as – water and feeders to help nourish them until the snow melts.  For additional information about creating wildlife habitats, visit these links for more in-depth information:

Backyard HabitatCertification Program

http://audubonportland.org/

Backyard Bird Shop Home