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Get To Know Your Backyard Visitors During National Bird Feeding Month

Updated: Feb 14, 2022

Goldfinch, Male
A male Goldfinch perches in a bare tree. They're a common site in gardens across North Texas in winter.

Why do so many people feed wild birds? One reason is that we want to help our feathered friends, and like all good moms of the world, we show our love by offering food.

As it turns out, our parental instincts and their hunger are a match made in heaven, A number of studies have shown that supplemental feeding can be very helpful to them — especially in winter — because it provides them with a constant source of rich, nutritious food. Another equally important reason is that it benefits us. Watching them flit around our feeders connects us to their wild ways, which is vital to our own health and well being.

National Bird Feeding Month

February is the perfect time to jump on the backyard bird bandwagon because mid-winter is when you can be most helpful in feeding them, which probably is why it was chosen as National Bird Feeding Month. The Smithsonian Museum of American History even has an exhibit celebrating bird feeding in America.

Great Backyard Bird Count

It also happens that this year, the National Audubon Society's 21st annual Great Backyard Bird Count will take place between Friday, February 15, and Monday, February 18, 2019.

Where To Begin

If you're new to backyard birdwatching, we recommend that you start with a tube shaped feeder and some Black Oil Sunflower seeds (one of the most popular foods). Start by offering a small amount so that it doesn't spoil. Make sure you regularly clean the feeder and that you also offer a source of fresh, clean water.

Don't be surprised if birds don't immediately flock to your feeder. It will take time for them to find it. Birds are also ever-cautious of predators and will not approach your feeder if they don't feel safe.

Within a short time, you'll build up a flock of regular visitors who will brighten up your winter days with their colorful plumage and cheerful songs.


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