We’re passionate about birds and nature. That’s why we opened a Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop in our community.
7240 Kingston Pike,
Knoxville, TN 37919
Phone: (865) 337-5990
Fax: (865) 337-5991
Email: Send Message
Mon - Sat: 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Sun - Sun: 12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Feeding the birds is a great way to introduce children to the wonders of nature. Children love to be involved in building their own feeders, buying food, and observing the birds as the fly in and out. Feeders can be made out of many household items, such as coffee cans. Paper milk cartons, and plastic pop bottles. You can even use an empty half of a grapefruit, orange, or coconut. You can also make bird cookies and tree ornaments. Craft ideas and homemade recipes can be found in abundance online.
Fun feeder and birdhouse kits are available at retailers or online. One kit, Build a Bird feeder Kit by Toysmith, works well to immerse the child in the activity as it needs to be hammered together and includes paints so the feeder can be personalized. Spend an hour building a feeder with your child: as soon as they fill it with good bird seed, they will feel an instant attachment to “their” feeder and “their” birds. They just might look out the window in between looks at their digital screens.
Window feeders are a great way to get kids interested in watching birds, because the birds are just so close! Involve your child in filling the feeders, cleaning them, and making a list of the birds and the foods they ate.
Another way to get kids involved is to encourage them and their class or troop to get involved in the Great Backyard Bird Count, organized by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, National Audubon Society, and Bird Studies Canada, and sponsored by Wild Birds Unlimited. Over one weekend in February, thousands of people all over the world watch and count the birds in their yards or neighborhoods and report their findings to gbbc.birdcount.org. This “citizen science” project provides valuable data for scientist seeking to understand where the birds are and why. Even as little as 15 minutes of watching can result in an important report to be shared with researchers. This activity teaches many skills, from watching and identifying birds to using binoculars and the internet. Combined that with the joy of joining other kids and adults all over the world who are helping to protect our planet by learning about birds. All participants are encouraged to submit photos of their birds, another activity the kids can take part in.
*Excerpt taken from The Joy of Bird Feeding by Jim Carpenter