Birds are essential members of many ecosystems and are everywhere. With so many species today, the wild nests they create for themselves aren’t enough to sustain each species or keep birds safe. We must play our part in ensuring their survival by taking care of them, either in the environment or as home pets.
You probably already have a bird feeder in your backyard and are wondering how else you can contribute to the survival of our winged friends. Well, a birdhouse is a way to go. They are the real estate for birds. They are effortless to create and maintain. They are cheap, strong, and don’t require that much space.
Apart from birdhouses being very easy to set up and taking up very little space in your backyard, they also do a lot to help birds thrive. They offer an instant home for nesting birds and help bring more beautiful, winged creatures into the world. And birds provide significant benefits to our environment, which makes birdhouses very important to our environment.
10 Benefits of Birdhouses and How They Help the Environment
You may wonder how a simple wooden structure can be so important to our ecosystem. However, birdhouses provide several advantages to the environment. Below, we’ll take you through ten of those advantages.
1. Pest Control
Certain species of birds enjoy munching on insects. They are considered insectivores, and include bluebirds, cardinals, chickadees, nuthatches, etc. They naturally feed on worms, mosquitoes, beetles, caterpillars, larvae, ants, flies, aphids, grasshoppers, and other pests. These insects provide enough nutrition for the birds to stay healthy and provide pest control services for you.
So, if you have a birdhouse in your backyard, you don’t have to worry about a pest infestation. Your birds would inevitably feed on them, thereby keeping them to a bare minimum and preventing an imbalance in the ecosystem.
2. Plant Pollination
If you have a flower garden and a birdhouse in your backyard, you’re sure to benefit from bird pollination, which is also known as ornithophily. This is a prevalent phenomenon yet very strange to most birdhouse owners. Birds such as sunbirds, honey-eaters, and hummingbirds are among the species that pollinate flowering plants.
Birdhouses provide them with a safe place to lay their eggs which means you have more pollinating birds in your backyard. More of these creatures indicate you’re contributing to the pollination process for fruit trees and other flowering plants. This helps leave your garden looking beautiful, contributing more greenery to the environment.
3. Help Spread Seeds
Some plants depend on animals to transport their seeds to new locations. Birds are among the helpers for that process. It is done when the outer coat of the seeds eaten by them is weakened in their digestive system. They are then disseminated through the bird’s droppings after it has passed through its digestive tract.
Having a birdhouse allows you to contribute to the regeneration of plants by housing birds whose droppings would spread the seeds away from where the host tree is often remote locations. This allows the seeds to be planted in good and moist soil. And enable that plant family to grow in new areas.
4. Provides Shelter for Birds
Birdhouses are safer than wild bird nests for birds. They are made from thick, insulated solid wood, stronger than any nest that a bird can build. They provide a place for mother birds to lay their eggs and raise their young. It protects them from predators such as other birds, cats, squirrels, etc.
Birds are also protected from harsh weather conditions in birdhouses. During winter, they can find these houses a suitable shelter to stay warm. They can also use it for roosting. A good birdhouse with proper ventilation holes on the base will provide your winged friends cool air during the summer.
This is very important because birdhouses are usually located outside with the sun beaming down on them. So, in order not to allow your guests to suffer from overheating, your birdhouse must be well ventilated.
5. Preserves the Species
Many environmental factors have begun to make it hard for birds to survive. Some species have their natural habitat taken away by floods, deforestation, wildfires, etc. The nests created by birds aren’t enough to protect them from the dangers to their species. So, having a birdhouse in your backyard provides a haven for bird species that are at risk of thinning out.
For example, species such as Bluebirds have seen a decline for several years now. The Bluebird, however, naturally searches for enclosed places to live in. By providing a shelter for them to lay their eggs safely, you’re contributing to the growth and continuation of the population.
No nest can be compared to the solid and thick timber used to make a good birdhouse. Although many wild birds prefer to make their own natural habitats, having another home to fly to for safety, especially during their nesting period, is a big plus.
6. Aesthetically Pleasing
Birdhouses come in different types, shapes, and colors. Some are plain, while others are colorful with various designs. Some birds, however, are drawn to brighter colors, while others prefer more natural colors to protect them from predators. But no matter what type of birdhouse you choose to go for, it’s always a beautiful decorative piece for your backyard.
Soothing sounds and the flurry of colorful birds that’ll visit your birdhouse daily are a bonus. You can even begin birdwatching and study the types and patterns of birds and their movements throughout the year. All these provide for an aesthetically pleasing sight.
It can also help you develop a new inexpensive hobby in building birdhouses if you want to do more than enjoy the sight. It’s sure to keep you active and agile and will make you some extra cash.
7. Natural Fertilizers
Some people shy from creating birdhouses because of the fear of their garden or lawn getting covered in bird poop. But it’s for this exact reason a lot of environmentalists make theirs. Bird droppings sink into the soil and create a good compost mixture for fertilizer.
Also, most birdhouses are mounted a few feet above the ground. This allows the birds to have a short swoop path, encouraging them to fly back and forth from the bottom to the birdhouse. By walking on the ground frequently, birds help to fertilize the soil by the etching effect made by their claws.
This effect allows the soil to become loose and more absorbent, allowing nutrients to mix with the topsoil and increasing the level of good bacteria needed to balance the pH.
8. Weed Control
Nobody likes weeds in their gardens. Therefore, most farmers and gardeners have birdhouses. Because it provides easy weed control, birds that love to eat seeds such as doves, finches, jays, sparrows, titmice, etc., would gladly eat your weed seeds which will help you prevent or reduce the growth of weeds.
It, in turn, helps save you the time and energy you would have spent trying to get rid of those weeds while increasing your crop yield. So, if you’re big on getting rid of weeds, you might want to put up about two or three birdhouses.
9. Increased Property Value
Birds are always trusted to put on a great show if you ever decide to sell your house. A lot of potential buyers often enjoy seeing birds flutter around the backyard. It provides a harmonious environment for people looking for a peaceful place to call home.
It also helps improve property values around the neighborhood and makes a good investment for rental markets. So, if you’re ever trying to sell your home, you can be sure that a strategically placed birdhouse will help you seal the deal.
Birdhouses aren’t just decorative, but they’re great for observing and studying local wildlife. You can learn about the migration patterns of various birds, mating, and their nesting patterns throughout the year. These birdhouses allow science to understand better how humans and wildlife can live together successfully.
It provides an opportunity for the coming generation to learn about conservation, appreciation, wildlife protection, and our environment.
There truly is nothing as beautiful and mentally satisfying as waking up to the sound of birds chirping happily in your backyard. Not to talk about the sight of the hatchlings while trying to catch their first sights of the world. With all the benefits to you, the birds, and most importantly, the environment, it’s no wonder everyone is rushing to build their birdhouses.
So, hang a birdhouse or two in your yard and sleep happily, knowing you’ve provided a balance of nature in your environment. And also create a beneficial relationship between you and the birds. Be sure to set up your birdhouse in a suitable way, and before you know it, your backyard would be home to all bird species who make use of it.