Garden Bird BathsCreating a space for birds to bathe and drink is an important way to help your local population of birds remain healthy throughout the year. A bird bath is a small pool of water created artificially, this could be as simple as a functional shallow bowl of water or a more decorative raised bird bath made from materials such as terracotta. Adding a bird bath to your garden will encourage robins, blackbirds, tits, thrushes, finches and more species of bird to visit. All species of birds need to drink and bathe, providing a garden bird bath all year round will help the local birds find water especially in the summer months. You can then enjoy watching the birds drink and splash about in your bird bath, a great joy for every bird lover.
Bird Bath PlacementBird baths can actually become harmful to birds if positioned in the wrong place within the garden. Placing a bird bath under a tree or bird feeder which deposits used food, leaves, dirt and debris can result in the bird bath becoming dirty and unhygienic very quickly. Bacteria can multiply within the water and result in issues, or disease for birds who drink or bathe from this water. Placing bird baths too closely to a window can also be dangerous, birds can often get confused which can lead to injuries and collisions. Predators can be a huge issue to birds who choose to visit gardens, a bird bath must be placed where the birds feel safe and out of potential praying eyes.
So where is the best placement? That all depends on your garden or outdoor setting, the climate, time of year and many other factors. Consider the recommendations listed below when choosing the position of your bird bath. You might not be able to meet all of the criteria but that doesn't mean you can't have a bird bath, just be sure to find the most suitable location you have in your outdoor space.
- Visibility: The bird bath must be visible so you can see the birds and the birds can find the water, but not too out in the open so birds feel unsafe. Close to a bush or tree for easy escape is preferred, but away from falling tree debris and potential predators.
- Water Replacement: Consider the ease of replacing the water in the bird bath by choosing a placement near to a hose or tap.
- Sun and Shade: Partial shade is ideal for birds all year round, access to sun to warm up the water in colder months and shade during the summer months. You can always move to a shadier spot on those very hot days.
- Bath Size: smaller baths can be moved easily when cleaning is required, and the weather dictates an alternative spot in the garden. If your bird bath is very heavy and hard to move, make sure you place it in a spot you can access to clean and refill all year round.
- Level footing: Some bird baths can be very heavy and breakable, make sure the bird bath is level to keep you and any visitors safe. A level bird bath will also help to keep the water on offer at an even level and make use of the bird bath water capacity.
Keeping Your Bird Bath CleanIt's very important to keep your bird bath clean, excess bacteria can infect the local bird population and result in disease or illness. It’s simple to clean a bird bath and when done on a regular basis can be very quick.
First remove any old water and debris from the bird bath ready for cleaning. Using a diluted mixture of vinegar and water (9 parts water, 1 part vinegar) scrub the bird bath to remove any discoloration and bacteria. Rinse thoroughly and refill with fresh water. This process should be done a few times a week to keep the bird bath in top condition. We suggest wearing gloves to keep your hands protected from the bacteria and cleaning process.