Parker County Today June 2017 - Page 75

more traditional suburban backyards. To benefit birds, your landscaping efforts must meet at least one of their four basic needs. In addition to food and water, birds need places to nest and places to hide. Generally speaking, to get the greatest increase in activity at your feed- ers with the least amount of effort, you will focus on plants that provide places to hide or cover. Birds will visit your feeders and birdbaths more regularly if they feel safe there. If you wonder whether birds feel safe at your feeding station, watch how far away they fly when frightened. They usually fly to the nearest safe place, and it should be no more than 10 yards away. Ideally, there will be some cover much closer than that. But keep in mind that plants closer than six feet may be used by squir- rels as launching pads for jumping onto your feeders. Face Feeding Why should these things matter to we who have made the whole world our habi- tat? Maybe because even though the loss of a warbler species wouldn’t stop the world, it would diminish our habitat, and our humanity. 73