Bathing Birds

It is too cold right now to make sure the birds have a bath. But spring will come. If you want to start gathering materials now they will be ready when you decide the time is right.

As you can see from the picture a bird does not need anything fancy. They just like to splash in the water. But we want to have something that looks good.

If you have the patience this is a really good project for the children. It gives them a chance to be creative and then they will have a sense of responsibility because the water will have to be replaced and kept clean.

Begin now to save those plastic dishes that come with microwavable meals. Wash them thoroughly. Use mild dish detergent and rinse it completely away. Never use bleach or any other cleaner when cleaning for animals. The residues can make them sick.

Each bird bath with need 3 five foot lengths of manila twine. That will be a bit of an expense. Maybe each child can contribute to the price.

Help each child tie the 3 lengths of twine together with a sturdy knot at both ends. The knots will hold the weight of bath and birds so you will not want it to fall.

Next the children can gather vines. Grape vines work well but any safe to touch vines will work. Even dried vines can be used. Dried vines should be wet when manipulating them so they do not break.

Each child will weave or braid his/her vines into a nest to surround the plastic bowl for his/her bath.

Set the woven nest into the twine. Then set the plastic bowl in the nest inside the twine.

If you would like to decorate it using old plastic leaves or flowers go for it. Do not use plastic fruit. It might confuse the birds. We do not want them to eat plastic.

Once the bird baths are completed fill them with water. Fresh water will be needed every day. The nice thing about those plastic bowls is that they can be replaced as needed.

Use a piece of wire ( a wire coat hanger with its hook is ideal) bent over a tree limb to hang the bird bath. After the area has been quiet for a while the birds will come and put on a show.