Birding is naturally an environmentally friendly, eco-aware hobby, but the most conscientious birders take extra steps to ensure that they are protecting not only the birds they enjoy, but also the environment that nurtures those birds. These 10 ways to be a green birder are easy options that anyone can try to add more environmental sensitivity to their birding.
1. Recycle Birdseed
Feeding the birds can be expensive, and birders who recycle seed not only save money on birdseed
but also help the environment. Use a tray or platform beneath feeders to catch spilled seed for other birds to eat, let spilled seed grow to create a natural food source or augment seed feeders with bread and kitchen scraps to recycle foods that would normally become trash.
Designing a bird-friendly landscape means using native plants, less water and more natural cover that birds will enjoy. By planting more trees, flowers and shrubs for the birds, birders are also enhancing their backyard habitats and promoting green landscaping.
3. Recycled Birdhouses
Before you buy a new birdhouse, consider making one from recycled materials. Large cans, two-liter bottles, scrap wood and old logs can all be used to create unique and environmentally-friendly birdhouses while reducing waste and landfill trash. If you’re not the crafty type, consider purchasing a GreenBird house
made from recycled paper or investigate how manufacturers create their birdhouses to choose the best one for the birds and the planet.
Practicing good birding ethics leads to a healthier hobby and a healthier environment. Ethical birders do not litter, keep the birds safe and do not disturb nesting birds or other wildlife.
Birders who understand the importance of bird conservation and actively support conservation initiatives can help rehabilitate injured birds, increase endangered species awareness and preserve critical habitats. This helps maintain the biological and environmental diversity of bird species and allows future generations of birders to share this delightful hobby.
Protecting birds from cats and other pets helps eliminate unnatural predators that threaten wild birds. Spaying or neutering pets and training them not to disturb wild birds are other ways to allow pets and backyard birds to co-exist in a friendlier world.
7. Grow Birdseed
Growing your own black oil sunflower seeds, millet, nectar-producing flowers, nuts
, fruits and berries are great ways to provide natural food sources for birds. Not only will this add plant diversity to your yard, but it will also save on processing and shipping of commercial seeds.
8. Avoid Yard ChemicalsInsecticides and herbicides not only kill weeds and bugs in your yard, but they also eliminate two natural food sources for birds. Some bird species are also sensitive to heavy chemicals and can become ill from chemical use. By avoiding these chemicals, birders can ensure healthier birds, a purer groundwater supply and a naturally healthy lawn.
9. Carpool for Birding TravelIf you plan on attending a bird walk or birding festival, contact other birders in your area to arrange carpools. Not only will this reduce the carbon emissions of vehicles, but fewer cars will disturb birds less and lead to a more successful birding trip.
One of the best ways to be a green birder is to share your love of birding with others. Birding is one of the fastest growing and most popular hobbies in the world, and if more people enjoy birding then there will be more environmentally conscious birders to help preserve both the hobby and the planet.