For a gardener, growing your hard work just to see it be eaten alive by destructive insects will create a lot of frustration. Take advantage of controlling the pest population in your produce by attracting local birds to get a fly by farmer for your wildlife garden.
Wren and Stumpy – The wren is about five inches long with a short tail and chubby body.
While birds won’t get rid of all pests, the House Wren which is common throughout the country (48 states) can really help your garden. The industrious work of the wren not only serves their family but humans, too. Since their diets consist of bugs and insects, you never have to worry about the wren destroying your garden or flowers. Whenever a wren does eat foliage or vegetation it is very little in quantity and only a result of digging for their original intent, a juicy bug.
Whether its Cabbage Worm or a Cabbage Looper Caterpillar, Wrens will take out the resistance in your cabbage, broccoli, chard or kale crops. These graceful gardeners will have Aphids pried from apple buds and Grasshoppers out of your cherished green beans. Moths will be a little more scared when a wren is around. Leafhoppers, Ants and Locusts, Don’t Try! You’ll see a yellow brick road of squash, corn, soy and other staples when you let Wrens rest at your pad.
Wrens help gardeners by eating a variety of other bugs, too. Though not their main staple, wrens also eat flying pests such as wasps, flies and bees, along with spiders, snails, ticks and millipedes. The wren is truly a natural pest control that any gardener would love to have on duty.
When wintertime approaches the wren loves to feast on holiday treats such as seeds, berries and nuts. While most of their diet is protein that comes from bugs, about 10 percent of the wren diet is obtained through nuts and berries. So remember to tweet your little farmer friends with a small holiday bonus for all the hard work and keep your wildlife community thriving.
Wrens are small but very busy birds that work hard tending to their family with great diligence. They are so caring and protective they will feed birds of other species if need be.
The House of Wren. The male prepares several nesting sites before taking his mate to each. Once the female selects her home, she will begin adding her final touches of soft materials with which to lay her eggs.
After that a bit of a housewarming as the male will establish several perches outside the home and make his presence known by singing from each perch. Given the fact these busy birds tolerate humans fairly well, providing local wrens with the food they love is sure to bring plenty of enjoyment to your home.
Always putting their young first, both the mother and father wren will carefully feed all of their young before heading off to eat and relax alone. Once rested they head back to their busy brood to do it all again.
The Purple Martin – A variety of swallow at about 7.9 inches from beak to tail.
The Purple Martin is the largest North American swallow. These aerial acrobats have speed and agility in flight, and when approaching their housing, will dive from the sky at great speeds with their wings tucked.
Attracting these mosquito eating members of the swallow family can be as simple as providing a birdhouse*. In the Eastern United States, purple martins nest almost exclusively in nest boxes, while west of the Rockies they often nest in tree cavities and building crevices.
The Common Nighthawk – Typically dark, displaying cryptic colouration and intricate patterns, this bird basically becomes invisible by day.
These medium-sized crepuscular (nocturnal) birds can be tricky to attract to a backyard unless you have a yard full of insects to eat. Because they’ve also adapted to nest on level surfaces, such as the ground or flat rooftops, they are the perfect visitor for urban gardens. The Common Nighthawk is ironically hard to find in most gardens, but very useful.
Almost every bird will eat a few bugs and grubs so enjoy the chirping cheerleaders for your own bird farming team.
*Green Yourself Tip: Build your own birdhouse! Its a fun project to get a guest house for friends flying in from around town.