QUESTION FOR KIDS: What do birds eat?

Birds are one of the most common wildlife we see, but how often do we really take time to learn from them? Kids of all ages can get excited about nature, and have fun exploring the variety of feathered friends right outside the window.

Materials for this activity:

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Follow this easy, step-by-step activity:

In this activity, students of all ages can work on hands-on project building, observation skills, and keeping a written record relating to birds feeding in their yard or neighborhood. More advanced students can predict results, interpret data, and create new variables to change outcomes.

  1. Place a bird feeder where you can watch what birds come to feed.
  2. Fill the bird feeder with bird seed. You can also lay out raisins and scraps of apples or oranges.
  3. Wait for birds to start coming to your yard.
  4. Observe them with binoculars and use a bird guide to identify what kind of birds you have in your backyard.
  5. Write down your observations in your notebook.

A few tips to help you out:

  • Different birds eat different things. Do a little research to find out what the birds in your area like to eat!
  • Some birds, such as quail, pheasants, and doves will only feed on the ground. You can supply food for them by sprinkling millet, and other grains or seeds, over a spot in your yard.
  • Birds need water as well as food! A bird bath in a safe place can help attract even more birds to watch.
  • Birds are easily startled. It’s important to be very still and not make sudden movements or loud noises.

Go Beyond the Activity

  • In your notebook, record what different species come to visit and their eating habits.
  • If you like to draw, you can draw the birds that come to your backyard.
  • Go on a walk or hike in a natural area nearby and see how many birds you can see and identify. You might even have a bird sanctuary nearby you can


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