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DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM ON PHONE OR TABLET mixed birdseed unsalted peanuts or pistachios, in the shell fruits slices, such as apples, oranges, or raisins suet cakes 5 observation logs, one for each group 5 pulleys (optional) Additional Materials bird guide for your geographic area children’s books about birds, such as About Birds by Cathryn Sill, Bird by Moira Butter- field, and What Bluebirds Do by Pamela F. Kirby video camera (optional) Directions for Making the Feeders 1. Wash the bottles and poke a few small holes in the bottom for drainage. 2. Cut a hole in the center of each side, about 1 inch from the bottom (a hot glue gun without the glue will quickly melt a hole) 3. Insert a dowel or stick through opposite holes to make perches for the birds 4. Cut a rectangular opening, 3½ inches across and 2 inches deep, on each side, about 2 inches from the bottom of the container. 5. Hang the feeders high enough to prevent predators, such as cats, from reaching the birds. Children can use pulleys to raise and lower the feeders. SCIENTIFIC INFORMATION Feeding wild birds is especially appropriate during late fall and early spring, when many spe- cies are migrating, and during winter, when birds in many parts of the country need extra food to keep warm. Different types of birds eat different foods. Some small birds, such as hummingbirds, eat nectar from flowers. Many small birds eat seeds, which provide fats and oils for energy. 88   CHAPTER 2 Sunflower seeds are a favorite of many songbirds. Another favorite food of many birds is insects. Suet cakes serve as a substitute for these birds. Robins have a particular fondness for worms. Fruits and berries are another food source for many birds. Some birds, such as hawks, owls, and eagles, are carnivores and eat fish, small reptiles, and rodents. Finally, some birds, in particular vultures, eat animals that have already died. These birds are good for the environment because they clean up rotting flesh, which helps stop the spread of disease. IMPLEMENTATION 1. To cultivate interest in birds, start by sharing several books and challenging children to look for birds when they are outside. 2. Teachers or parents can make the birdhouses, as described in the directions. Children can decorate the feeders if they wish. 3. Divide the children into groups, with one group responsible for each feeder. The groups can rotate over time. 4. Provide a variety of types of food for the feed- ers, with one type in each feeder: (1) sunflower seeds; (2) mixed birdseed; (3) fruit slices, ber- ries, or dried fruit; (4) peanuts or pistachios in the shell; and (5) suet cakes. 5. Hang the bird feeders high enough to prevent cats from catching the birds. This is a good time to employ pulleys. Children can use them to raise and lower the bird feeders when more food is needed. 6. Children can observe the birds that come to the feeder over time. They can record how many and what types of birds visit each feeder. Be sure to have books readily available that help children identify the birds. 7. In neighborhoods where it might be difficult to leave the feeders out, they can be rolled out each day on a clothing rack. 8. Video is a great way to preserve images of the birds that visit the feeders. These can be shared and discussed during group time. COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL