Sure, you know about the River Walk in San Antonio. Kids love horses. They also love the beach. Only in the South… can you ride horses on a pristine beach that has been home to English settlers, French landowners, and turn-of-the- century American elite. Heed the advice. But it also showcases its breathtaking beauty.
Your kids can see seven states, stand under a waterfall, and take a walk through a cavern full of glowing gnome statues. Seeing these jets twist, turn, and roll with the synchronicity of a dance troupe is mind-boggling at any age. The first stop is Washington National Cathedral. Ask your kids to find the carved Darth Vader grotesque, added during the s. Then tell them to touch a piece of the moon at the National Air and Space Museum.
Only in the South… can we claim that four of the last six Presidents have made their homes here. Your kids can see every key player in Southern society of the s, and they can act the part. History at Colonial Williamsburg , Virginia, means playing dress up. This is truly interactive entertainment. We Southerners pride ourselves on fine hairdos. Little girls expect the same for their dolls. When you get back to your room, your daughter and her doll get a doll bed, cookies and milk for the dolls too, of course , and pink bedding.
Or Disney World? Here are our recommendations. Pin ellipsis More. Image zoom. Explore exhibits about the Civil Rights Movement on a one-hour guided tour. At what age should you take your kids to New Orleans? Replay gallery. If you find a bird that has hit a window, it may be concussed or have internal injuries and occasionally there may be wing or leg injuries. Put them in a dark, well ventilated box with a lid and keep them in a quiet place for an hour or so.
Do not give them food or water. During that time the bird may recover from its injuries and be able to be released. If not or if there are initial obvious injuries, contact your local wildlife rescue or take the bird to a vet who knows wildlife or birds. If you have a window that is, or suspect will be prone to bird strike you need to make the window as unattractive to birds as possible.
Some tips are:. It is a stressful time when you discover an apparently helpless little bird. Search nearby trees and shrubs for the nest and pop them back in. If the baby is largely feathered but usually has a stumpy tail and it can perch on your finger and hop around, it is a fledgling and it is actually ready to leave the nest.
Its parents are likely around nearby keeping an eye on it. If you put it in the nest, chances are it will jump back out again, so simply find a nice safe branch and pop it up there. Mum and dad will call to it and come and continue to feed it. Thankfully no! Birds recognise their offspring by call rather than smell, and in fact they have a pretty bad sense of smell. So if you find a nestling out of a nest simply pop it back in and mum and dad will do the rest. You have seen a pretty baffling sight. The baby bird will be a young cuckoo. Most Australian cuckoos are brood parasites.
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That is, the adult cuckoos lay their eggs in other birds nests. In most cases the baby bird hatches and pushes out the eggs or nestlings belonging to the host parent. The exception to this is the Channel-billed cuckoo where the baby grows so large, so quickly that it monopolises the host parents and the other babies starve. You may wonder how a parent bird cannot recognise that this baby is obviously not their own as they struggle to feed it, but they are simply doing what instinct tells them to —feed the baby that is in their nest. There is an evolutionary arms race happening however between some cuckoos and the host birds.
Some birds like having some soil or compost in the bottom of the nest box so, read up on the type of box you have and whether that step is needed. If at all possible it is best to delay any activities that will be occurring around the nest till the young fledge so as not to disturb it, however we realised that that is not always practical and possible.
If there are going to be people on site and lots of things happening, make them aware of what is going on in the shrub and ask that they please keep as much distance from it as they can. You may be able to rope off the area to make it obvious the stay clear. We feel that a garden where birds forage for their food naturally is much better than purposefully putting out supplementary food for birds.
Australia is very different to Europe and North America where the extreme winters mean that birds rely on supplementary food to survive. However, we understand that many people take a great joy from feeding birds and may not want to stop all together. If you do feed birds we would advise that:. A garden that provides natural food for birds such as one with native grasses to provide seed, mulch to encourage insects and small-flowering locally native shrubs to feed honeyeaters is much better for our whole bird community than one that feeds only a few potentially problem birds.
Research has shown that birds still continue to forage for food naturally even whilst being fed by humans, but having large proportions of supplementary food in their diet is still not healthy for them. Young birds in particular need to learn foraging skills from their parents and it is important that birds not become too accustomed to human interaction or else this can lead to issues, such as birds becoming brazen and aggressive to take food.
If you do feed birds, wean yourself off so it is something that is just an occasional treat for you and the birds. Deciding what to plant in your garden is a big decision and it takes lots of careful planning. However each garden is different and so, while we have provided general information on the types of plants that different birds need, you will need to consider the characteristics of your garden aspect, slope, soil type etc to work out what will grow well. They will have a wealth of knowledge that can help you.
Where possible, we suggest getting a list of locally native plants to put in your garden. Your local council will have a list and will be able to direct you to your nearest native nursery where tubestock is often very reasonably priced. We want to expand this and have lists for all major cities and towns and so if you are keen to contribute to this please Contact Us. Getting the right structure lots of layers in your garden is the really important thing. Native plants in general can be great but steer clear of hybrid natives with large flowers that flower throughout most of the year like the big showy grevilleas as these can attract large aggressive honeyeaters which can in turn make it difficult to get other smaller birds to visit.
Nothing seems to divide a neighbourhood like wandering cats! It can be heartbreaking to see birds in the garden you have grown for them being taken by domestic pets. If you have cats in your garden, either your own or your neighbours, there are some things you can do:. We wish we could! However the birds you can get in your yard is influenced not only by what you plant, but what is going on in the space around you.
Inspire your neighbours by creating a beautiful and practical garden, you will be surprised by the great example you can set. Talk to your local council about what is going on with your local parks and see if there is a way to incorporate planting for birds in them. Most councils will have plans for local wildlife corridors as well and as these develop they can be very important for moving birds across the landscape.
Remember your garden is one of many stepping stones that birds need to use. So even if you think that your garden is too isolated, it might just be an important piece of the puzzle for bird-friendly habitat. Definitely not! It pays to do your research to find out what is available in your area. In many cases, birds require structure so density of shrubs rather than a specific species of plants, so don't go and rip out a garden full of exotic plants if they are providing good habitat for birds. We do suggest though that you avoid those large, long-flowering hybrid natives though like the showy Grevilleas as they attract large, aggressive birds like Noisy Miners that can then dominate other birds and keep them from your garden.
Try and get locally native plants in your garden if you can, but don't think that this is the only way to have a bird-friendly garden.
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You can work with what you already have and add new plants to it. Birds in Backyards only has permission to use photographs and calls for the purposes of our own project. You can contact some photographers directly as well. Firstly, thank you for submitting surveys to our Birds in Backyards database. The data you submit will be used in a variety of ways. The Program Manager looks up specific information for member e-Newsletters as well as for talks and workshops and will be updating the website regularly with survey findings.
We also use survey results for specific projects such as our Powerful Owl project or at the request of different universities, schools or local councils. Within the Birds in Backyards family we also have a number of students at different times who are using the databases as part of their projects. Remember, with our new survey page set up and our relationship with the Atlas of Living Australia, you can search the Birds in Backyards survey database yourself and see what is happening in your area, the state or throughout the country.
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Jump to navigation. Some Important Definitions What is biodiversity? What is fragmentation and what impact does it have on birds? Why is the landscape scale important for birds? Bird Identification I have seen a bird in my yard and I have no idea what it is. How do I identify it? There is a bird that is calling all night, what is it? There are so many field guides out there.
How do you pick a good one? Why is this? There is one parrot that looks different to the rest of the flock. Do you know what it could be? I have seen a bird with a band on its leg. Who do I tell?
Birds Behaving Badly Why do some birds swoop? Cockatoos are destroying one of my trees, how do I get them to leave it alone? There is a heron who has taken up residence at my fish pond. How do I get it to leave? Sick and Injured Birds There is a bird in my yard that is bald, what is wrong with it? My cat caught a bird. It is still alive, what do I do? Baby Birds and Nests I found a baby bird on the ground, what can I do to help it?
I have seen a baby bird that is bigger than the parents and looks nothing like them, what is going on? The baby birds have left our nest box. Should we clean it out? I have discovered a nest in some shrubs near our house. We are due to have some renovations done. What can I do about the nest? Bird Feeding What food should I put out to attract birds to my garden? Is it true that if I stop feeding the birds they will starve? Bird-friendly Gardening How do I know what to plant in my yard for birds? Where can I get a list of suitable plants for my garden? I want to plant a garden for birds but my neighbours have cats.
What can I do? If I plant for small birds, can you guarantee they will appear? Is it essential to have a garden entirely full of locally native plants? Threats to biodiversity are numerous and human activity is responsible for most of them. Over-exploitation of natural resources. Resource extraction, hunting, and fishing for food, pets, and medicine. Pollution and diseases.
For example, excessive fertilizer use leads to excessive levels of nutrients in soil and water. Human-induced climate change. For example, climate change is altering migratory species patterns, and increasing coral bleaching. When looking at a new bird, keep an eye on it for as long as possible and note as many features as possible: Size compared to something you already know Colour Silhouette does it look like an owl, or a pigeon etc?
If you have a note pad handy, jot down as many points as you can after the bird has gone. We have many nocturnal birds including: Tawny frogmouth Powerful owl Southern boobook Australian Owlet-nightjar Bush Stone-curlew And there are a range of diurnal birds daytime birds that can get noisy at night too.
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If you have to move through an area with an aggressive magpie or any other bird you can try: Moving straight through the area. If you are on a bike you are less likely to be attacked if you hop off and walk rather than ride quickly through Wearing a hat or helmet note that a helmet will not protect your neck and sunglasses to protect your eyes Drawing a pair of eyes and wearing them at the back of your head.
Birds are less likely to attack if they think you are watching them Remember do not harm your local birdlife. Here are some tips to try to discourage birds from perching: Rubber snakes — place some around the area. Hang mobiles or CDs — movement can deter birds. Hang some CDs from string around the decking and the light reflection and movement may discourage the birds. Fishing line — attach fishing line securely ensure it is taut so birds cannot get tangled or injured and run it about an inch off the decking rails. This should make the site difficult to perch on. You can try: Cling wrap or cellophane on the outside of the window A bird silhouette like a hawk or owl stuck on the window A rubber snake in front remember to move it A CD or other mobile hanging in front of the window Soaping or dirtying the outside of the window Remember is illegal to capture or harm a bird, its nest or its eggs, even with the best intentions.
You can also try: CDs or plastic bags tied to string and hanging from the tree Tie a kite that looks like a hawk or owl to the tree Strong bird netting covering the tree. Of course we want these birds to be able to survive in our landscape but if you want to limit fish losses you can try a few things: Net the pond and ensure there is lots of aquatic vegetation for the fish to seek shelter in A fence-like barrier with taut wires or strings 20 and 35cm above the water surface erected at the edge of the water can prevent a heron from reaching the fish.
Make sure it is taut so birds cannot get tangled and injured. Plant aquatic plants around the outsides of your garden pond and make the sides quite steep. If the heron is unable to access the fish then it will quickly learn to try somewhere else. Note these first three tips of course obscure your view as well. If you have vertical or ventian blinds angle them so it is obvious that the window is an obstruction Bird netting taut over the frame will obscure the appearance of the window. This netting should be drawn taut across the windows, inches from the glass, or birds could get entangled.
You will be able to still see out the window and the birds should avoid it. If the do hit the netting should bounce them off with less risk of injury None of these measures will solve the issue of bird strikes but they will reduce the occurrence. If you do feed birds we would advise that: Birds are fed infrequently. This will encourage birds to find their own food and to obtain a more healthy diet. Wean yourself off daily feeding and down to something that is an occasional treat for you and the birds.
Stations are placed out of the reach of cats and other predators.
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Stations are cleaned daily and food removed after an hour. Vary the time of day in which you provide the food. Good quality food is used such as commercial nectar mixes or seed mixes. The cheaper supermarket seed does not contain sufficient nutrition for birds. Pets are fed indoors or remaining food is removed. Common Mynas and other birds regularly eat pet food so we should limit their access to it. Get out in your garden and create habitat for your bird life.
If you have cats in your garden, either your own or your neighbours, there are some things you can do: Firstly, talk to your neighbours — be polite and calm and explain your concerns. Research shows that cats that are allowed to roam live significantly shorter lives than those who live indoors or in a cat run. By approaching it with being concerned for the cats welfare as well as the birds rather than attacking their decision, you may be able to open a dialogue. Explain that you are not going to harm their pet but you would like to look at ways to stop them coming into your yard.
There are a range of native shrubs that fit this bill. Clippings from these plants placed under other shrubs may also stop the cats from stalking. Surround part of your garden with a fence chicken wire etc that leans in the direction from which the cat will approach.
The cat should be unable to climb over at an angle. Place flimsy plastic roll-up fencing on top of a fence etc to prevent cats climbing over it. Taut wire or string fitted cm above the fence-top can make it difficult for cats to balance on the fence. Spray citronella or water with lemon or orange peel around the borders of your place.
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