For Feathered Friends

Few things are more cheerful than the sound of happy birds chirping, whether you have citified jays or country songbirds. Providing water year round, but especially during hot months, improves their habitat and increases your chances of observing their fun behaviors up close. You can attract more birds to your balcony, roof patio, or yard by including a birdbath.

Good birdbaths are similar to shallow puddles found naturally in the wild. Choose a shallow container that is easy to clean, such as an old frying pan, shallow baking pan, or plastic lids of large containers.

If you have a yard, you can dig a shallow hole and line it with plastic or some other waterproof material. Birds prefer water basins that are on the ground, but if cats or other predators are a danger, put the birdbath three to four feet off the ground. Place some sand in the bottom of the bath and arrange a few branches or stones in the container, so birds can stand on them and drink without getting wet. Remember to change the water every few days.

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