Decline in Bird Numbers
The Cornell Lab of Ornithology recently published the astounding results of a study on bird populations. According to their report, the population of breeding adult birds in the United States and Canada has declined by a staggering 2.9 billion since 1970. These numbers took the birding community completely by surprise.
One of the most startling facts from the study is that the sharp decline is completely across the board. One might expect that the declines represented birds that may already be threatened or endangered. However, they found that the affected birds came from almost all habitats, including some of the most common birds found in our own backyards, including cardinals, sparrows, juncos and more.
The loss of important habitat, along with the wide-range use of agricultural pesticides have contributed greatly to the declines, especially for migrating birds that require a healthy habit in their breeding grounds, migration stops and their winter locations.
How Can You Help
What can you do to help? You can participate in programs like “Project FeederWatch” through the Cornell University Lab of Ornithology and help monitor bird species in your neighborhood. The Cornell Lab is the foremost source for all things related to wild birds.
You can also start by transforming your backyard into a bird-friendly habitat. Add native plants to your landscape and resist the urge to cut down dead trees when you can. Provide nesting boxes on your property for birds like house wrens, chickadees, bluebirds, swallows, owls and woodpeckers. You can also help by putting up silhouettes on windows to cut down on bird vs. window deaths during both the spring and fall migrations.
Join the BGC Bird Club
Finally, you can become a member of the BGC Bird Club at Burlington Garden Center. You can send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to sign up for the monthly newsletter or follow the BGC Bird Club on Facebook. The club shares photos and valuable information about species in and around the Burlington area, as well as seasonal tips for products that will help you to maximize your enjoyment of backyard birds.
Contact Burlington Garden Center
If you need some assistance with creating your bird-friendly habitat, you can contact Burlington Garden Center and have a designer visit your home. You will receive tips on where to place bird-friendly plants, as well as help in setting up the right bird feeders and/or water features. A 1-hour visit is $50 and includes a $10 coupon for the store. If you need to see a visual representation of what your habitat will look like, a computer-generated option is also available.
Burlington Garden Center is dormant for the month of January through the middle of February, with regular hours starting up again on or about March 1st. In the meantime, don’t hesitate to contact us at the email address or phone number below to schedule an appointment, sign up for the newsletter or answer any of your gardening or backyard birding questions.
Landscape Designer/Backyard Bird Enthusiast
Burlington Garden Center