It’s for the Birds: How to Buy the Right Birdbath

Buying a birdbath makes the area birds happy, but it also adds beauty and interest to your backyard. If you aren’t a bird lover already, you’ll want an attractive birdbath where you can watch dozens of species drink and splash and socialize.
But do a bit of research to choose the right bird bath for your home’s yard. Picking the right bath means that you will attract more birds while keeping them healthy. Plus, you’ll add more curb appeal to your home.

Design

You’ll get more birds in your bath if the design is comfortable for them. Experts recommend buying a model with a narrow lip so that smaller birds can perch there easily as well as larger ones. Also, you don’t want a bath with a completely smooth finish. A little texture in the bath allows a better grip for a bird’s talons and minimizes slipping.

The bath doesn’t need to be deep since 1 to 2 inches of water is generally enough for most birds. You will attract a wider variety of birds if your bath has a shallow and a deeper end, however, somewhat like many human pools. If the bath is too deep, birds will drink in it but not use it to bathe. One way to create variances in the depth is to add flat, rounded river stones, 1-2 inches in diameter. These become resting points in deeper water for smaller birds.

Materials

While concrete is most commonly associated with bird baths, it isn’t the easiest material to clean. Concrete nooks and crannies can lead to a buildup of unhealthy algae and dirt. Also, concrete birdbaths can freeze and crack in the winter if you don’t store them properly. One way to help prevent the build up of algae is to use a safe product such as this Fountain Fresh. It helps keep your birdbath or fountain safer and cleaner.

If you want an easy-to-maintain bird bath, consider a model made of heavy plastic or a combination of fiberglass and resin.

Size

The best size for you will depend on several factors, including the size of your yard or garden. If you only have a limited space, don’t crowd your yard with a huge bird bath that makes other outdoor activities difficult. Birds will flock to your smaller model, especially if you place it near vegetation. A larger birdbath does have some advantages, though, because it can accommodate more species and give them more room from the other birds. More space will lead to fewer angry bird incidents. So if you have the room, go big!

Color

You can have fun with the color of your birdbath. Bright colors attract many birds because they either reflect the color of their own plumage or indicate a food source. Hummingbirds love reds and pinks; orioles are partial to orange; and bluebirds, not surprisingly, love blue. Neutral colors are reassuring to more nervous birds, such as doves and thrushes. Experts warn that bright white signals danger to many species, so that’s definitely a shade to avoid.

Purchasing a colorful birdbath or painting one a vibrant color will add some design fun to your backyard. Choose a color that works with your home’s exterior colors and trim. Your birdbath will make quite a statement when combined with colorful flowers and other plants.

Consider a Fountain

Adding a fountain will attract even more birds to your bath. They are attracted to creeks and streams in their natural habitat, so the sound of running water will entice them to check out your birdbath. Some fountains are basically designed directly after birdbaths, sometimes called ‘bubblers’. They are shallow or have a small single tier to them, which creates multiple places for birds to rest, drink or groom themselves. A great example of that this this Portwenn Fountain.

Elevation and Placement

Buy a bird bath that is on a pedestal or one that can be easily elevated. It needs to be out of reach of predators such as dogs, cats, raccoons, and any other animal that can harm or scare the birds. Also, you don’t want other animals dirtying the bath water before the birds arrive. They enjoy a nice, clean water source.

Experts advise that birdbaths should be placed near or under trees to make them more attractive to birds. However, you should also avoid placing it near bushes or other areas where predators can hide. Make certain you have a clear view of the birdbath from a distance. You want to enjoy watching all of the species that come to use the bath without fear of scaring them off!

You may not currently consider yourself a birder, but placing a birdbath in your yard will change that. When maintained properly, a birdbath will attract dozens of bird species to your yard. In fact, a birdbath will draw more birds to your property than feeding them will. Your yard will become filled with the beauty and songs of birds that will delight you and your family members.

The birdbath itself can add color and character to your yard and encourage you to plant more bird-friendly flowers and greenery. Your bath may become the centerpiece of your backyard landscaping. The simple act of buying a bird bath can transform your home into a lovely haven for birds and humans alike.