ENVIS Centre, Ministry of Environment & Forest, Govt. of India

Printed Date: Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Bird activities for kids

To find out more about our feathery friends of the sky, try

 

1.      Bird's Little Helper Activity

In the springtime, birds are on the lookout for nesting material. Be a bird's little helper and give them a hand with this bird-friendly activity.

What You'll Need:

·         String

·         Scissors

·         Short strips of old rags

·         Other nest lining

You can encourage birds to nest in your area if you provide them with natural nesting materials or artificial materials that birds will accept as well as the natural ones.

Cut pieces of string into lengths no longer than three inches (or birds can get tangled in it). Short, narrow strips of rag are also useful to birds. Feathers from an old feather pillow are often acceptable as nest lining. If your family discards lawn clippings, save some to dry and give to the birds.

String, rags, and dried grass can be laid out on the ground or on branches of shrubs for birds to pick up. Hang a used berry basket up on a tree limb and fill it with bits of lint or with small feathers.

If you have swallows in your yard, try this trick: In the spring when the swallows first return, go outdoors in an area where you've seen swallows and hold a fluffy white feather in your fingertips as high as you can.

The swallows will dive at the feather until one gets brave enough to snatch it from your fingers and take it home to its nest.

Ever wondered about the bird that left that feather in your backyard? Continue to the next page to learn about a fun feather activity.

 

2.      Build a Bird's Nest Activity

Birds spend hours searching for and collecting materials to make a cozy nest, so why not help them out? Lend them a hand -- or wing -- by trying this Build a Bird's Nest Activity.

What You'll Need:

·         Nature and human-made materials

·         Modeling clay

In addition to twigs and leaves, birds like to use bits of string, yarn, lint, and other human-made materials to build and furnish their homes.

Take a walk outside and pretend that you are a bird that needs to make a nest. See what building materials you can find. Look for natural materials like leaves and twigs, and also for human-made materials.

When you get back home, shape some modeling clay into a bird's nest. Line the inside and outside of the nest with the things you collected, until you come up with the perfect bird home. This makes a great piece of art for your home.

 

3.      Search for Birds' Feathers Activity

Finding a feather is a wonderful treat. So why not try this search for birds' feathers activity and find a natural treasure in your own backyard?

Grab a paper lunch sack, slip on your sneakers, and head outside.

What You'll Need:

·         Brown paper lunch bag

·         Gardening gloves (optional)

·         Walking stick

·         Spiral notebook

·         Tape

·         Markers

  1. Keep your eyes peeled. Remember that feathers are light and easily caught by the wind, so carefully use your gloves and walking stick to rummage through piles of natural debris blown against large stones or fallen logs.
  2. When you find your feathers, slip them into your paper bag for safekeeping until you get home. Once you do, ask your parents or adult neighbors if they can help you identify what bird lost each feather.
  3. Use library books or the Internet to find pictures of the birds. Tape the feathers inside a spiral notebook and make a few notes about what secrets each one revealed.
  4. Be sure to wash your hands with soap and warm water whenever you handle wild feathers of any kind. Feathers can carry germs.

 

4.      Animal Treats in a Tree Activity

This activity will leave your neighborhood animals appreciating your creativity and your generosity. Follow the instructions in this Animal Treats in a Tree Activity to give local animals a well-deserved treat!

What You'll Need:

·         Tree

·         Animal treats

·         Rake

  1. This activity is fun to do in winter time, but you can do it any time. Pick a tree in a somewhat secluded spot. In the afternoon, decorate the tree with edible treats for animals.
  2. You could use fruit (pieces of apple, pear, or banana; grapes), nuts, bread smeared with peanut butter, vegetables, chunks of cheese, or anything else you think animals would enjoy.
  3. After you've finished, rake the ground around the tree until it is smooth.
  4. Come back the next morning to see what treats were eaten and what tracks were left.
  5. If you can find an adult who will come with you, you can visit your tree at night and see the animals that come there.

 

5.      Plant For Your Birdies Activity

Why not plan your gardens around the birds you want to attract? Studies show birds prefer these five types of plants when searching for the ideal place to nest and live.

What You'll Need:

·         Seeds

·         Tree saplings

·         Flower starts

  1. Evergreens provide cover, winter shelter, and summer nesting sites. Grass (especially if not mowed during nesting season) provides cover for ground-nesting birds. Nectar-producing plants (especially red blossoms) attract hummingbirds and orioles.
  2. Fruiting trees and bushes, like cherry trees and grapevines, attract dozens of species of birds for obvious (and tasty) reasons. Be sure to plant trees or bushes that bear fruit every season.
  3. Nut and acorn plants, such as oaks, chestnuts, walnuts, and hazelnuts, are good for birds to eat and provide good nesting sites.

 

6.      Birdbath Activity

Birds like bathing in shallow water, and you can make the perfect bath for them using an upturned garbage can lid.

What You'll Need:

·         Garbage can lid

·         Pebbles

·         Water

·         Terra cotta flowerpot (optional)

  1. Fill the lid with a layer of pebbles so that it's weighted down and will stay put.
  2. Set the garbage can lid on top of a stump in your yard or on top of a terra cotta flowerpot.
  3. Fill the lid with water, and wait for all those birdies!

 

7.      Owl Eyes Activity

Can an owl really see better than you at night? Try this owl eyes activity and shed some light on your night vision.

What You'll Need:

·         Binoculars

When it's almost dark, go outside and try your best to see. (Go to an area where there are no outdoor lights.) Pay attention to how much you can see: the outline of a tree or house? a cat moving?

Now, look through binoculars. Can you see more?

You can see better through binoculars because they take in more light than your eyes can. But even with binoculars, you're no match for an owl. Owls' eyes take in about 100 times more light than yours, so they can see quite well at night.

 

8.      Make a speedy bird cake

Make this quick and easy cake to keep the birds happy.

What You'll Need:

·         Good quality bird seed

·         Raisins, peanuts, grated cheese, suet or lard

·         yoghurt pots

·         string

·         mixing bowl

·         scissors

Steps

1.      Carefully make a small hole in the bottom of a yoghurt pot. Thread string through the hole and tie a knot on the inside. Leave enough string so that you can tie the pot to a tree or your bird table.

2.      Allow the lard to warm up to room temperature, but don’t melt it. Then cut it up into small pieces and put it in the mixing bowl.

3.      Add the other ingredients to the bowl and mix them together with your finger tips. Keep adding the seed/raisin/cheese mixture and squidging it until the fat holds it all together.

4.      Fill your yoghurt pots with bird cake mixture and put them in the fridge to set for an hour or so.

5.      Hang your speedy bird cakes from trees or your bird table. Watch for greenfinches, tits and possibly even great spotted woodpeckers.

 

9.      Make a recycled bird feeder

Make a bird feeder from the bottles you would throw away.

What You'll Need:

·         Plastic drinks bottles

·         yoghurt pots or milk cartons (make sure they're clean)

·         wire or string

·         bird seed

·         scissors

 

Steps

1.      Cut a hole in the side large enough to allow a free flow of seeds, but in such a way that it won’t all fall out on the ground in the slightest puff of wind, and won’t get wet if it rains.

2.      Make a few small holes in the bottom of your feeder to allow any rainwater to drain away.

3.      Hang it with wire, or even strong string from a tree or your washing line.

4.      If your feeder starts to wear out or the food in it goes mouldy, recycle it and make another one! 
Remember to keep your feeders well stocked, especially in winter. Birds come to rely on them and will go hungry if you forget.

 

10.  Make a string bird

 

This is an easy activity that you can do at home or at school.

What You'll Need:

·         Books with pictures of birds

·         bird silhouettes (print out the downloadable sheets)

·         card paper

·         scissors

·         glue

·         string (hard, but not too thick)

·         wax crayons

    

Steps

1.      Choose a bird silhouette and remember the name of the bird. Cut out the silhouette.

2.      Glue the silhouette on to the card and then cut it out. It is easier to cut around the legs as if the two were one.

3.      Cover with glue, and begin to lay on the string in the chosen directions.

4.      Make sure that the string entirely covers the black area, with the strings closely touching. Separate the legs at this point. Allow to dry

5.      When the glue is dry, practise taking rubbings from the string bird by placing paper over the bird and rubbing hard with the side of a wax crayon. Practice is needed to keep the paper in position, and to find out how hard to press with the crayon.

6.      Make your own designs with these coloured thread stamps.

 

11.      Duck Cap

You'll have something to quack about after you make an easy and cute duck hat!

What you’ll need:

  • Yellow baseball cap
  • Orange felt
  • Scissors (have an adult help you with the scissors)
  • 2 large wiggle eyes
  • Glue

 

Steps

1.      Cut out 2 pieces of orange felt to fit on the bill of your baseball hat.

2.      Glue one of the pieces of orange felt to the top of the baseball hat bill.

3.      Glue the second piece of orange felt to the bottom edge of the bill only, so it will hang and look like the duck has an open mouth.

4.      Glue the 2 wiggle eyes just above the bill of the hat.

5.      Get quacky wearing your duck hat!

                          Duck Hat

12.      Pine Cone Bird Feeder

Make an easy bird feeder out of a pinecone and peanut butter.

What you’ll need

  • Pine cone
  • Paper plate
  • Butter knife (have an adult help you with this)
  • Smooth peanut butter
  • Birdseed
  • Ribbon or yarn
  • Scissors (have an adult help you use the scissors)


Steps

1.      Cut a long length of yarn or ribbon to hang the bird feeder. Have an adult help you use the scissors.

2.      Tie the ribbon in a knot around the top of the pine cone.

3.      Tie a knot in the end of the ribbon.

4.      Place the pine cone on the paper plate.

5.      Use the butter knife to spread peanut butter on the pine cone (make sure you get it inside the ridges) and round the edges.

6.      Sprinkle birdseed over the pine cone (it will stick to the peanut butter).

7.      Roll the pine cone in any leftover birdseed that is on the paper plate.

8.      Hang the bird feeder in a tree and watch the birds enjoy their treat!

                   Pine Cone Bird Feeder

Source:

http://tlc.howstuffworks.com/family/bird-watching-activities-for-kids.htm

http://www.rspb.org.uk/youth/makeanddo/index.aspx

http://funschool.kaboose.com/formula-fusion/birds-of-a-feather/