Improvise! Welcome to my Do-It-Yourself (DIY) world.
|Having a water feature which incorporates moving water and its accompanying trickling sounds is one of the best ways to invite wild birds to your backyard. I didn't have $150+ for the fancy bird baths at the bird specialty store, so I made my own.|
The bath itself is made out of one of our storage tote lids. Add rocks for birds to perch, drink, and bathe at varying depths. I did splurge on a $15 fountain pump and the hideous little spitting garden gnome. I also have to add water regularly due to evaporation, drinking birds and other wildlife (including kids). Now that freezing temps are coming, I will have to see if I can repair an old heated bird bath I have stored in my garage...yet another DIY project for this backyard birder.
By the way, I'd estimate that I have four times as many birds visiting my backyard since adding the water feature. Birds shall not live by seed alone. Give 'em water too and enjoy!
(Oh...I can hear you questioning my lawn care skills based on all that tall vegetation around the bird bath. Well, I'll have you know that I intentionally leave a section of the yard "wild"...a la Bill Thompson, III.)
|Homemade Suet Cake - We recently had a delicious roast for Sunday dinner, but it had a ton of extra fat on it. I cut off the layer of fat and melted it down to a liquid which cooled into a white gelatinous paste. Then, partially recalling the recipe for Zick Dough, I added corn meal, oats, peanut butter, and then some of my premium bird seed. I pressed this mix into a handy small container and chilled it in the fridge. Out came this suet cake that looks and smells as good as any store-bought suet cake I've seen. Now we'll see if the birds take a'liking to it, especially as this wave of winter weather comes rollin' through the Salt Lake area.|
Finally, I've blogged about this before, but here is my make-shift bird photography blind. Step-ladder + camouflaged materials. Since this photo, I've added camo netting, purchased very cheap in the kids toy section at Walmart. I'm hoping to use the make-shift blind this winter for some more close-ups of Oregon Dark-eyed Juncos, White-crowned Sparrows, and maybe even Mountain Chickadees.
BiF! contributor, and fellow Utah birder-photographer, Mia McPherson shared how she used her "noodle" both literally and figuratively to create a simple and inexpensive car window camera rest. I love the ingenuity of it!
If you have any creative DIY birding ideas, please share them here in the comments. If you've blogged about it, don't be shy about posting a link.