Written by an area Landscape Architect and birdwatcher with over 30 years of experience with landscaping in north Texas: what works and what doesn't. Emphasis on attracting birds to north Texas yards, and reducing required yard maintenance. Tips, trivia and proven advice for a natural, low-cost approach for this unique and sensitive part of the country.
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Sunday, April 13, 2014
Birdfeeders and windows; the danger zone
A lot of birds are killed by
flying into windows. There are zones, however, where it’s OK to put a feeder
near a window. A feeder closer to a window than 2 feet (including on the
window itself) is safe. Also, a feeder farther away than 7 feet is OK. The “danger
zone” of between 2 and 7 feet should be avoided. You may still have a few bird
strikes, however, when birds just aren’t paying attention. Like if it's being chased by a hawk or something.
A White-throated Sparrow
crashed into our large kitchen window early this morning. (it was probably migrating north, like all true sparrows) The lifeless
body was on our deck. Putting pathos aside, it was an opportunity to examine it up close. It’sa beautifulbird – black streaks, pure white throat,vivid spots of yellow, and tan
and gray body. I felt a deep responsibility for seeing to the needs of these couple-of-grams creatures whose home we have chosen to usurp.
belong indoors Ordinary housecats are one of birds’ greatest dangers; natural predators.
They’re naturally stealthy and excellent hunters, even if well fed.Nobody knows for sure, but there may be
2.5-million outdoor cats in Texas. Each kills an average of 5 or 6 birds a
year. That works out to 12½ to 15 million dead birds annually. (Cats live a lot
longer when kept indoors anyway.)
have a cat at our house. However we never let it outside. It stares longingly
out the window at birds. Not only will it lives longer as an “inside cat”,
but so will the birds in our neighborhood.
OWEN YOST, in
addition to being a blogger, is a licensed Landscape Architect emeritus who has
lived and worked in north Texas for over 30 years. He is the recipient of a
Lifetime Achievement Award of the Native Plant Society of Texas, and is a
member of the American Society of Landscape Architects (ASLA), International
Federation of Landscape Architects, National Wildlife Federation and the
Audubon Society. His office is at Yost87@charter.net in Denton.