(Publisher’s note: Readers have commented about how much they enjoy stories about birds so, Chelsea Update would like to thank Wild Birds Unlimited for the information in this story.)
A study*, published September 2019 in the journal Science, found that the population of breeding birds in the US and Canada has dropped by nearly 30 percent (or 3 billion birds) since 1970.
While there are some discouraging findings about overall bird populations in the study, there are encouraging examples of how galvanized human effort can work to bring back our birds. Examples include Raptors (+200%), Waterfowl (+56%) and Woodpeckers (+18%).
Wild Birds Unlimited has a long history of providing educational information, products and services that directly support local and migratory song bird populations.
You can indeed make a difference – in your own backyard. These are seven simple actions you can take to help #SaveTheSongBirds:
Make Windows Safer for Birds: The windows in our homes and offices can be hazardous for birds. Birds cannot readily distinguish the presence of a pane of transparent glass from an unobstructed space or passageway and often fly into window panes causing injury or death.
Click here to learn how you can make windows safer for birds.
Keep Cats Indoors: Cats are a danger to song birds, and for that reason you should never allow your kitty outside with free access to birds and other wildlife.
Go here to learn more.
Plant Native Plants: Scientists have identified habitat loss as the biggest reason for the decline in bird populations. Wild Birds Unlimited is proud to be the Champion for the National Wildlife Federation® Certified Wildlife Habitat program and to sponsor the Birds Canada Gardening for Birds program. Through these programs, everyone can learn how to create bird-friendly habitats.
Learn how you can certify your yard and help #SaveTheSongBirds.
Drink Bird-Friendly Coffee: You may not realize it, but the coffee you drink can have an impact on bird populations. Look for bird-friendly, shade-grown coffees and you’ll be helping to preserve native forests birds depend on for survival.
Watch Birds: The simple act of watching the birds in your own backyard can help. When we are more aware of the creatures around us, we care more and do more to protect them. Enjoy the birds in your own backyard by offering our exclusive bird feeding products as well as creating a backyard bird feeding habitat. We are also proud to create opportunities for bird watching in millions of backyards across North America through our sponsorship of the Great Backyard Bird Count and Project FeederWatch.
Avoid Pesticides: The use of pesticides in your yard can harm birds both directly (through poisoning) and indirectly (by reducing their natural food supply). We encourage you to be mindful of this when maintaining your lawn. Additionally, our WBU seed blends do not contain fillers, which means a reduction in pesticide use across thousands of acres of crops.
Reduce Plastics: Our WBU EcoTough and other recycled plastic products make use of plastics that would otherwise end up in landfills. Additionally, many WBU stores serve as collection centers for recycling plastic bags and conduct events which educate about the benefits of recycling.
We encourage you to spread the word about how we can all help. Be sure to share this information and use the hashtag #SaveTheSongBirds.
*The study is a collaboration between avian and conservation scientists, led by Ken Rosenberg from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology and American Bird Conservancy.