Attracting Native Birds To Your Garden

scarlet honeyeater 1 20120916 1636073646The Moreton Bay region has some of the most attractive native birds living within.  If you would like to get a little closer to them, all you need to encourage them to live in your garden is simply to provide food, shelter and fresh water and the birds will do the rest for you!

The food and shelter  for birds means having a variety of heights and various growth densities (trees, shrubs, grasses and groundcovers) planted close together in your garden.  These plants will produce flowers for nectar feeding birds, seeds and fruit for other birds and insects will come along too which will attract insect feeding birds.  The different heights and densities provide protection, peep holes and screens for nests at various levels.

Read more below.....

Nectar Feeding Birds rainbow lorikeet in the creec gardens 1 20120916 1809895373

Nectar feeding birds such as Honey Eaters, Wattle birds, Rosellas and Lorikeets have long, brush-tipped tongues for dipping into flowers. The flower provides the food source and the birds repay them by taking pollen from one flower to the next, thus facilitating cross pollination. They love feeding from the following plants and so do the insects. 

Foodsource:

Grevillea Grevillea are great bird plants.  Flowers and seeds start in winter providing food.  Brightly coloured red flowers attract colourful birds.  The denser and pricklier the foliage, the better protection it gives birds from predators and it also provides fabulous, safe nesting sites.
Bottlebrush (callistemon) attracts a variety of birds, including the insect eaters.
Tea Tree (Leptospermum) Leptospermum and Melaleuca species put on an outstanding flower show at various times of year, depending on the variety. They also attract insects, which in turn attract insect-eating birds.
Banksia An all-rounder, nectar and seed bearing, are various densities and heights for all different birds. Privides good nesting sites.
Correa Small thick shrub with bell shaped flowers.

 

Fruit Eating Birds

Fruit eating birds include the figbird, honey eaters, silver eye, fruit dove, whipbird and many other rainforest birds. They love the berries produced by our native plants.

zosteropslateralis 1 20120916 1093625115Foodsource:

Syzygium (lillipillies) This plant provides shelter, nectar and fruit and is also a bush tucker plant.
Blueberry Ash  as above
Fig tree as above

 

Seed Eating Birds alisterusscapularis 1 20120916 1516368959

Seed eatings birds such as pigoens, parrots, rosellas, cockatoos and galahs have very strong mandible beaks to crack open the hard casings of seeds.  Finches and wrens enjoy seeds of a different kind a bit closer to the ground.

Foodsource:

Grevillea Grevillea are great bird plants.  Flowers and seeds start in winter providing food.  Brightly coloured red flowers attract colourful birds.  The denser and pricklier the foliage, the better protection it gives birds from predators and it also provides fabulous, safe nesting sites. 
Wattles  Provides seed, nectar and insects.
Casuarinas  Provides fruit, seed, insects and nesting sites.
 Lomandra  Provides seed
 Themeda  Provides seed

 

Insect Eaters/Carnivorous Birds

portfolio 7 20120825 1138632924Insect-eating birds are wrens, whipbirds, friarbirds.  They like similar plants to those of nectar feeders, so if you've got nectar-feeding birds, you'll have the insect-eaters too.    Carnivorous Birds include butcher birds, kingfishers, kookaburras, currawongs and owls. To get them into the garden you need wildlife and the best way to do that is to stop using nasty pesticides, herbicides and fungicides. This encourages a natural biology in the garden and brings wildlife such as insects, small lizards, worms and frogs.

Foodsource:

See Nectar Feeding Birds section above.

 

 

All Rounder Plants to Attract Birds

So to sum it up the plants you will need are:

  • Grevillia
  • Callistemon
  • Banksia
  • Syzygium (lilly pillies)
  • Golden Penda
  • Melaleuca (Paperbark)
  • Correa
  • Grasses:  Lomandra, Themeda
  • Acacia (wattle)
  • Casuarina (she oak),
  • Leptospermum (teatree)
  • Clematis Vine
 
 
See the Nursery page for plant list, online ordering and Nursery contacts.

http://www.creec.org.au/nursery

More Tips To Attract Birds

  • Reliable water encourages visits for a drink or a dip. But remember that birds like the water elevated so they feel safe, at least a metre off the ground with a branch extended close to the bird bath.

  • Native birds are especially attracted to red and yellow flowers, according to the textbooks, so keep that in mind when you're selecting plants.

  • Generally it’s good to have plants flowering at different times of the year, so you've got a year-round display of colour and a constant presence and diversity of birdlife in the garden.

  • Do avoid pruning during the nesting season (between July and March, but particularly September to December).

  • Do not use pesticides, as poison can build up in bodies if birds eat poisoned insects. The birds themselves, by eating insects, make the use of pesticides unnecessary.

  • ‘Weeds’ may sometimes provide safe refuges for birds such as wrens, so any clearing should be sensitive to their needs. Stage any major clearances and replant the cleared area as soon as possible.

  • Vines provide good nesting material and sites.

 

Enjoy the beauty of having a native garden and of course - those cheeky visitors!!

 

Don't forget - Please share your ideas and information/photos with us

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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