Parker County Today November 2016 - Page 49

plant fiber and give the birds a place to tuck in for the night or during stormy weather. Roosting pockets are charming and make wonderful gifts, but they are designed to only last a season or two, so check to see if yours needs replacing. You may also want to consider giving your feeders a good cleaning. Specially designed Wild Bird Center feeder brushes make it relatively easy to remove the grudge of seed that may build up inside feeders. Give your feeders a quick qua lity inspection, checking to be sure that all joints are securely screwed together. A little preventative maintenance will ensure that your birds can feed without interruption all winter. You may also want to move your feeders closer to the house for the winter allowing for easier feeding if bad weather strikes. Winter is a great time to disconnect drippers and misters and hook up a heated bath or install an immersion heater in your existing bath. Heated baths are not really “hot” but rather, well, not icy. Your birds will surely thank you. Heated baths provide birds with year-round sources of clean water for bathing and for drinking, activities essential to birds’ well-being regardless of the weather. In fact, the colder the temperature, the more essential it is that birds keeps their feathers clean and well-ordered through preening. Dirty, disorganized feathers may lose their insulative properties and can cause birds to freeze to death. Finally, give your windows a good cleaning inside and out, so you can enjoy watching the birds in your backyard through the winter. There’s nothing that can brighten the gloom of an overcast winter day as quickly as our avian friends going about the business of being birds. Heated Bird Bath Black-Capped Chickadee NOVEMBER 2016 PA R K E R C O U N T Y T O D AY 47