Aren’t birds amazing? They are in a class of their own. Like mammals, birds are warm blooded, but they lay eggs like cold-blooded reptiles. They are covered in feathers. Some fly in the air and some swim in the ocean, play games, use tools, sing songs, do complicated dances, decorate their homes, and some travel very long distances when the seasons change. Birds are descended from a dinosaur called maniraptoran theropod, the same family as the Velociraptor; some scientists believe those dinos were covered in feathers, too. So when you’re watching a little bird hop around, it’s the closest you’ll get to seeing a real, live, miniature dinosaur!
All year round you can invite birds to dinner at your home with this easy bird feeder.
What you need:
- Wood glue or hot glue
- Large craft sticks (between the size of a tongue depressor and a popsicle stick)
- Yarn or hemp string
- Peanut butter
- Make the base of the bird feeder. Lay one stick out, and then line up more sticks side-by-side, perpendicular to stick #1 until you have enough to span the width of stick #1 (which will cover the whole bottom of the feeder.) Leaving the other sticks in place, aligned side-by-side, and with all the ends even to each other, put a line of glue across stick #1 and glue it along one edge, so it holds together all the ends of all the other sticks. Use another craft stick and more glue to do the same on the opposite side.
- Using the “log cabin” method, build up the sides of your feeder by gluing down two sticks to opposite sides of the square, and then repeating the process with the next two opposite sides, until your feeder is five or six layers of craft stick high.
- Cut four equal lengths of strong string, 24-36″ long. Tie one to each corner of the feeder.
- Put the feeder flat on the floor and hold all four strings together at the top. Lift the feeder slightly up and make sure it hangs in a balanced manner, adjusting the strings as needed. Now, tie off the strings in a knot about 10-12″ from the top. You will use the remaining top 12″ of string to tie the feeder to a tree branch. If you’re hanging it from a hook, you can tie the top into a loop.
- Spread peanut butter all over the bottom tray of the feeder and pour some birdseed on top. Hang your feeder where birds will find it (but far enough from the ground that cats and other predators can’t easily reach it) and wait. You will soon have finely feathered visitors!
More Fun Facts About Birds:
- There are roughly 11000 species of birds on Earth.
- The ostrich is the largest bird in the world. If you put a cheetah and an ostrich in a race, the cheetah could outrun the ostrich over a short distance, sprinting short distances at 59 miles per hour. But an ostrich can run very long distances at over 40 mph, and would eventually outdistance the cheetah.
- Birds have lightweight, but strong, hollow bones that don’t weigh them down while they’re riding wind currents far overhead.
- Some bird species of birds — like corvids, which include jays, ravens, and crows, are so intelligent that they can create and use tools, play games with each other, and play pranks on their foes!
- Ostriches, emus, cassowaries, rheas, kiwi, and penguins cannot fly at all.
- Hummingbirds are the smallest birds in the world, and some of them travel up to 3000 miles at a time miles in a migration season. They can fly backwards and hover, and can flap their wings up to 200 times per minute! The bee hummingbird is the smallest bird in the world at only 2″ long.
Make your own observations:
What birds are common where you live? If you put different types of seeds in your feeder, do different birds come to eat? Do you see different birds in the summer than you do in the winter? Can you find a bird-watching guide and name all the birds who visit your feeder?
Related YogaKids Poses:
Crane, Flamingo…what other yoga poses remind you of birds?