Landscaping a garden to attract birds is a simple procedure of remembering one word.... diversification.
Birds are attracted to various food sources and therefore each of these can be designed into a garden.
Before the actual plants are selected, birds require the following:-
* a safe garden protected from cats and dogs
* a source of water
* a variety of nesting and sitting locations
* a blend of tall trees and shrubby bushes
Birds will be attracted to your garden for a number of reasons, such as:-
* their natural habitat has been destroyed
* their natural food source is hard to find
* climate changes have affected food sources
Given these reasons, landscapes should be made more bird friendly in both urban and rural districts.
Nectar feeding birds, simple plant list
natives: * gum trees (Eucalyptus and Corymbia)
* bottlebrushes (Callistemon)
* golden penda (Xanthostemon)
* black bean (Castanospermum)
exotics: * bird of paradise (Strelitzia)
* butterfly tree (Bauhinia)
* drunken parrot tree (Schotia)
* pom-pom bush (Calliandra)
* red hot pokers (Kniphofia)
Seed and fruit feeding birds, a simple list
natives: * sheoaks (Casuarina and Allocasuarina)
* grass trees (Xanthorrhoea)
* lillypillies (Acmena and Syzygium)
* gums, banksia, bottlebrushes and grevillea
* wattles (Acacia)
* grass seeds
many exotics that attract birds for their seed of fruit are known as weeds in some areas. Be careful with plant selection.
Insect and meat feeding birds
For these birds to come to your garden you must emilinate use of insecticides.
You can grow a range of plants that attract insects and butterflies.
Refer to the PLANT ID article on butterflies.
Should we feed native birds?
Feeding birds should only be done occassionally. Birds should not get to the stage where they rely on human suppliments, such as bird seed.
By providing a range of garden plants, this should satisfy both sides of the argument.
For more links on Birds, go to:
Nursery Industry notes
Bird Observers Club of Australia
Community Biodiversity Network
Book: Wildlife of Greater Brisbane, Queensland Museum
Text: Paul Plant, FAIH, Freelance garden and landscape writer