Welcome migratory songbirds to your yard

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Nothing says spring like the sweet sounds of songbirds. As warmer temperatures begin to arrive, so do the many familiar sounds of spring, including the songs of returning migrant birds.

After a long winter and tiring migration, our feathered friends need a welcoming haven to come back to. How can you ensure your yard or garden is bird-friendly?

To get you started, Lex Glover, wildlife technician with the S.C. Department of Natural Resources (DNR), offers a few helpful tips for creating an outdoor space birds will flock to:

  • Keep dead trees. Dead trees provide cavity-dwelling places for birds to raise young and collect insects for food. Many species will also seek shelter from bad weather inside these hollowed out trees.
  • Eliminate pesticides from your yard. Even those pesticides that are not directly toxic to birds can pollute waterways and reduce insects that birds rely on for food.
  • Prevent birds from hitting your windows. Move indoor plants away from windows so as not to confuse birds, or plant shrubs in front of them. Additionally, a variety of decals and treatments are available to create a visible alert to birds.
  • Keep feeders and birdbaths clean. This helps birds avoid disease and can help keep mosquitoes at bay.
  • Create a diverse backyard habitat. Plant native grasses, flowers and shrubs that attract local birds. A variety of plants will provide birds with food, shelter, places to raise young and even protection from predators.

Find out more about DNR’s wildlife management guide on songbirds.