National Bird-Feeding Month
February is National Bird-Feeding Month in the United States. This celebratory month was created to educate the public on the wild bird feeding and watching hobby. Because of National Bird-Feeding Month, February has become the month most recognized with wild bird feeding promotions and activities. The month is an ideal time for promoting and enjoying the bird feeding hobby, which is home-based and nature-oriented.
“Mr. Speaker, I would like to recognize February, one of the most difficult months in the United States for wild birds, as National Bird-Feeding Month. During this month, individuals are encouraged to provide food, water, and shelter to help wild birds survive. This assistance benefits the environment by supplementing wild bird's natural diet of weed seeds and insects. Currently, one third of the U.S. adult population feeds wild birds in their backyards.
In addition, Mr. Speaker, backyard bird feeding is an entertaining, educational, and inexpensive pastime enjoyed by children and adults. Bird feeding provides a needed break from today's frantic lifestyles. Adults enjoy the relaxation and peacefulness afforded by watching birds -- nature serves to relieve the stress and can get one's day going on a tranquil note.
Young children are naturally drawn to the activities involved in feeding wild birds, which can serve as excellent educational tools. Children can identify different species of birds with a field guide and can learn about the birds' feeding and living habits. These observations can then provide excellent research opportunities for school projects and reports.
Feeding wild birds in the backyard is an easy hobby to start and need not overtax the family budget. It can be as simple as mounting a single feeder outside a window and filling it with bird seed mix. For many people, the hobby progresses from there. They discover the relationship between the type and location of feeders, and the seeds offered in them, and the number and varieties of birds attracted. Parents can challenge an inquisitive child's mind as they explore together these factors in trying to encourage visits by their favorite birds.”
Each year, a new theme for National Bird-Feeding Month is selected, and promoted by the National Bird-Feeding Society. The theme for 2012 is "If You Feed Them, They Will Come...
The theme for 2011 was "Most Wanted - America's Top Ten Backyard Birds" and features ten species from the east and west that are among the most popular to attract. In 2010, the theme was “Hatching Out – An Introduction to the Wild Bird Feeding Hobby.” The goal of this theme was to promote best bird feeding practices for beginners and individuals who have been in the bird feeding hobby for decades.
- "Bosak, Chris. "A Change in Attitude Regarding Feeding Birds." The Hour [Norwalk, CT] 3 February 2010.
- Rugg, Jeff. "It's National Bird-Feeding Month." The Herald-Mail [Hagerstown, MD] 5 February 2010.
- Baicich, Paul J. "Revitalizing the NBFS". Bird Watcher's Digest Nov./Dec. 2009: 11. Print.
- Baicich, Paul J., Margaret A. Barker and Carrol L. Henderson. Feeding Wild Birds: A Short History in America (USA: Wild Bird Centers of America, Inc., 2010) ISBN 1-4515-1005-5
- Horn, David J. "February: National Bird-Feeding Month Opportunities." Bird Education Network Bulletin. 4 February 2010. Web.
- Richins, Vanessa. “Celebrate National Bird-Feeding Month with Pine Cone Bird Feeders.” Vanessa's Trees and Shrubs Blog About.com. 2 February 2010. Web.
- Stiteler, Sharon. “Wild Bird Centers Takes Over National Bird-Feeding Society.” Birding Business News. Birding Business Magazine. 15 June 2009. Web.
- Petersen, Wayne R. and Paul J. Baicich. “February: National Bird Feeding Month and GBBC.” The Birding Community E-bulletin. 2 February 2010. Web.
- U.S. House. Representative John Porter of Illinois speaking on National Wild Bird Feeding Month. 103rd Cong. Congressional Record (23 February 1994). Volume 140.