Attracting birds to your backyard is easy if you provide a pleasing environment. One of my favorite ways to do that is by creating a winter bird tree. It’s fun and easy to do with the whole family and your hard work will bring lots of birds to your yard for you to watch and enjoy.
How To Create A Winter Bird Tree
You can create an attractive environment in any type of tree but watch your yard to see if the birds are naturally attracted to any specific area. You can read more about how to attract birds to your yard in the winter for more tips but really any tree will do. The goal is to provide a variety of food, shelter and water sources so the birds feel at home in your yard.
Things To Hang In Your Tree To Attract Winter Birds
- Popcorn Garland – Use a needle and thread to create long strings of popcorn. Drape them around the tree.
- Cranberry Garland – Use a needle and thread to create long strings of cranberries. Drape them around the tree.
- Birdseed ornaments (See Below)
- Birdseed Pinecones (See Below)
- Birdhouses – Birdhouses can create shelter from wind, cold, rain and snow.
- Water – Fresh water is a must, especially in areas where water often freezes.
How to Make Birdseed Ornaments
- 1 cup of Birdseed
- 1 packet of unflavored gelatin (such as Knox)
- 1/4 cup boiling water
- Cookie Cutters
- Waxed Paper or Parchment
- Before beginning, spray each cookie cutter with cooking spray and spread them out on waxed paper.
- Add water and gelatin to a saucepan and bring to a boil.
- Continue stirring until the gelatin has dissolved. Remove from heat.
- Stir in about 3/4 of the birdseed adding more as needed until all of the liquid is absorbed.
- Press the seeds into the cookie cutters. If you prefer, you can form the seed mixture into small patties or use a muffin tin.
- Cut a straw into several segments and stick it into the seed mixture to create a hole where you can add a string.
- Allow the ornaments to dry overnight at room temperature.
- When the ornaments have dried, carefully push them out of the cookie cutters and thread them with a piece of twine for hanging.
How To Make Birdseed Pinecones
- Pinecones – If you collect pinecones from your yard you will want to dry them by placing them in a low oven for a few hours. This should kill any bugs that are hanging out inside of the pinecones and will also cause the “petals” of the pinecone to open.
- Peanut Butter
- Use a butter knife or a spoon to spread peanut butter all over the surface of your pinecone.
- Roll the peanut butter coated pinecone in the birdseed mixture.
- Tie a piece of twine to the pinecone.
- Tie the pinecones onto trees in your yard.
Both of these activities make great indoor activities to do with your kids when it’s difficult to get outside. We always plan ahead and collect and prep our pinecones on a sunny day and cover them with peanut butter and seeds on a rainy day.
Go Birdwatching In Your Backyard
Once you have created an environment that is attractive to birds you will want to spend some time watching all of the birds. Check out our Beginners Guide to Birdwatching where you can also learn more about our FREE printable birdwatching journal.
- The Trumpet of the Swan
- How to Attract Birds in the Winter
- Birdwatching Tips for Beginners
- 15 Fascinating Children’s Books About Birds
- 10 Things to do with Kids in the Winter
- Take Your Kids for a Winter Walk
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