Friday, October 31, 2008

MASON The New Boss

Meet the new boss, Mason. He applied for the job while we were at the Wassaic NY craft show. He showed up early in the morning with great enthusiasm and an interest in our birdhouses. How could we resist.

We gave Mason a little background as to what needed to be done in displaying our birdhouses. He quickly went to work pointing out which birdhouse needed to be strategically placed in order to have a good show.

He diligently placed this birdhouse in the spot HE wanted.

Mason was such a big help both days. We had to snap a couple more pictures of him with a birdhouse. His smile says it all.

Unfortunately this show was only two days, so his tenure with us was short but sweet. We really appreciated all his efforts and help and are nominating him for "Employee of the Month" for October 2008. Mason, you did a GREAT Job.

We would also like to thank him for the two pumpkins that he colorfully decorated for us. (You can see them in the first picture right behind him). They are on our front porch and everyone who goes by loves them.

Fred & Lynn

Look Who's In The Yard

I wonder if you know that an average yard is visited, on a regular basis by 15 to 20 birds.

Across the USA, the most numerous birds that someone can see are cardinals in the southeast, blue jays in the northeast, black capped chickadees in the northwest, and house wrens in the southwest.


Black Capped Chickadees eat great amounts of seed and are the most common visitors to feeders in their region of the northwest.


If you live in the city, you may think that the only birds that visit your neighborhood are the rock doves, house sparrows and starlings. The chances are very good of seeing other birds if there is a vacant lot, a patch of open ground or even a tree around you.

In the suburbs , where it is more rural, the chances of seeing different species of birds increase. There may not be many nesting, but if you have feed out they will certainly visit your feeder. Your opportunity for seeing birds in the winter increase because birds move over a greater area looking for food. Your best bet for seeing a variety of birds comes in the spring and fall when birds are passing through on migration.

Locality does play a major role in what types of birds visit your yard. A visit from certain species of birds depends on whether you have farmland, forest, mountains or desert around you. Lastly it depends on the season, as birds migrate to and from.

Dark-Eyed Junco


Dark-eyed juncos visit yards across the USA. Their plumage will vary depending on where they are at that specific time in their migration.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Ten Birding Tips

1. Black Oil Sunflower Seed is the most popular seed. Feeding the birds this seed will give you a variety of backyard songbirds.

2. If you would like to attract the beautiful American Goldfinch, try using nyger seed. Many know this as thistle seed. This seed is oil rich and will draw finches to your feeders.

3. One of the best times to view cardinals is early morning or at dusk. Cardinals like to feed on the ground but will come to feeders that have enough room for them to perch. They prefer to nest in bushes and thickets.

4. Birdseed and suet should be stored in a dark, cool, dry space. Both can also be put in the freezer for storage too.

5. Quality birdseed gives you the most feeding value for your money because birds often toss aside less expensive "filler" seeds. Peanuts, tree nuts and sunflower seeds are quality seeds. These seeds will be eaten with little waste.

6. What about those pesky squirrels. There are squirrel proof feeders available and baffles for existing feeders. If you have enough room in your yard, you may want to set up a feeding area just for the squirrels. This can divert them away from bird feeders. You can keep the squirrel area fully stocked with dried ears of corn and wildlife mixes that are sure to please them.

7. You can extend the life of your quality birdseed such as nyger seed by mixing it with black oil sunflower seeds or seed mix.

8. If you are pressed for time on certain days to restock your bird feeders and seed blocks are an excellent idea. Just unwrap a seed block, set it outdoors and go.

9. A clean feeder is a must to keep birds healthy. You can purchase brushes and bird feeding cleaning products to keep them clean. Oriole feeders and hummingbird feeders need to be cleaned two or three times a week in hot weather before adding fresh nectar.

10. Birdhouses can give winter shelter so keep them up during this time. In very early spring you can clean out the nests and get them ready for new families.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Water and Birdhouses

Birds love birdbaths and a crowed birdbath brings quality entertainment for everyone to enjoy. A modest size birdbath will attract a wide variety of songbirds, especially if a feeder is nearby. A supply of water in a birdbath or pond provides another incentive for birds to visit your yard throughout the year. Birds need fresh water for drinking and bathing. Water is just as important in winter as it is in summer. Birds need to keep cool during hot summer days and what better way than a birdbath. Birds do not sweat but pant to keep cool. In the winter, birds need fresh drinking water. The alternative is eating snow. They have to warm it and this costs them precious energy. Birds also continue to preen throughout the winter. This helps to maintain the insulation of the plumage, which is vital to the survival of birds in cold weather.

Even in a mature yard that is well planted with trees, dense vines and shrubs, there is likely a shortage of suitable nest sites. This is especially true if large number of local birds have been maintained through the winter by food supplied at feeders. It's so easy to follow the bird family life unfold if you put up a well placed birdhouse. A birdhouse should be placed away from the worst effects of the sun and rain. It must be secure enough not to fall down, but it does not matter if it wobbles a bit.

You must resist the temptation to visit a birdhouse or any other nest during the laying season. The laying period is a very sensitive time, and some birds desert their nest if it is disturbed. Visits also make the nest more vulnerable to predators who will follow the trail of your scent, out of curiosity.

Research has shown that a single visit to a robin or bluebird nest increases the chance of both dessertion and predators. If well groomed nestlings are disturbed, they are likely to erupt out of the nest in a panic. If they do, gently place them back into the birdhouse and stuff the entrance with a handkerchief until they settle down. There are about 80 species of birds that nest in cavities and are candidates for birdhouses.

Feeding The Birds

Your success in attracting birds depends on how far you can fulfill their basic needs. Even if your yard does not contain the natural wealth of food, water or large trees, you can create these features for our feathered friends by providing birdfeeders, birdbaths and a birdhouse .

You do not need anything elaborate to feed the birds. Just a few pieces of crust thrown on the ground will do the trick. Of course, many use commercial feed as a food source for feeding the birds. Feeding the birds is a popular pastime and it is estimated that 85 million people in North America use birdfeeders or landscape their yards with certain plants to attract birds. Studies show that several birds including chickadees, titmice, nuthatches and
woodpeckers can benefit from extra food supplies during the winter.

Just to give you an idea as to what birds may require for food, a blackcapped chickadee requires about 160 sunflower seeds each day and requires 250 seeds in a severe frost. Researchers have found that chickadees only take about a quarter of their food from feeders. In other words, the food we give them is a supplement to their natural diet, but is extremely valuable in very cold weather. When natural supplies are scarce, birdfeeders can make all the difference. The birds rely on this food to survive in temperatures zero degrees and below.

By perching quietly with their feathers fluffed out for extra insulation, birds can conserve energy too. They can can do this only as long as they have enough body fat to act as fuel though. Once this is used up they will either freeze or starve. Therefore, it cannot be stressed enough how important feeding the birds becomes in the cold winter months. Feeding in the summer can also be beneficial to birds. Raising a family is a tiring job. Some bird parents can make several hundred flights to the nest with food each day. Making it easy to find an additional food source for them can make their job less strenuous.

Most people get pleasure from the birds that come into the yard. For people who are confined indoors, backyard birdwatching can become a particular joy. A few minutes in the morning or evening can be a perfect way to forget about the tensions of the work day. Children can also enjoy and learn from the frequent visitors that come to the feeders


Food from the feeder is not usually suitable for nestlings. The feeder is actually something like a fast food joint, where both parents can get a nourishing treat for themselves while collecting food for their young.


It is often said that once you start to feed the birds in the winter, you should not stop until winter is over. The University of Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology has said putting food into feeders can make life for the birds that much easier and it is a valuable contribution to their survival in the hard winter, but no bird relies entirely on one source of food. In natural circumstances, birds have to adapt to changing food sources for their survival and this depends on how quickly they find new food supplies. There are times when birds may become dependent on bird feeders. In the spring, before their natural food is readily available or in unusual hard spells of weather, well stocked feeders are life savers.


Many people stop feeding birds at the end of winter because they are afraid that they may temp migrants to stay behind, when in fact, birds may need the extra food to put on fat to be used for their juorney. Many of the birds that do not migrate will leave the suburbs for the country to nest. Those that do, turn to natural food and seem to ignore the feeders.
The yard cannot always be relied upon to be an adequate source of food. If you have coaxed the birds into nesting in one of your birdhouses, you should make sure that they have enough to eat. Many people are often afraid that the nestlings may be fed unsuitable food from a feeder, but in many bird species, the diet of the nestling differs from the adults. The parents can obtain their own requirements easily from the feeder, while finding the correct natural food for their offspring.

Plenty To See When You Attract Birds

Many people get pleasure from the birds that frequent their yard. Feeders provide the easiest way to attract birds. Close encounters with birds are a magical experience. The thrill that comes with the nearness of nature can be experienced by something so simple as chickadees landing on your hand to enjoy some seed.

A more unusual and spectacular occurrence, such as a hummingbird buzzing on almost transparent wings at a sugar-water dispenser outside your window, can create a lasting impression.


Hummingbirds are the only animal that can fly backwards.

Friday, October 24, 2008

A Message For The Back Yard Bird Watcher

We make all our birdhouses for the small song birds that frequent your yard. Our objective is to offer information that we have been asked over the past few years. Our goal is to keep you informed on as much information as possible, so you can attract birds to your back yard.

Here's a little tidbit: Did you know that birds are the most visible and entertaining form of wildlife? They come in all colors, provide hours of entertainment as they bathe, feed, court and nest. The effort is minimal in attracting them. The main ingredients are food, water, plants and a good sturdy birdhouse.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Our Show Schedule

This is a list of our scheduled shows:

Nov. 15 & 16
Westport CT
Harvest Fair @ St. Luke Church

Nov. 22
Ridgefield CT
East Ridge Middle School

Nov. 28, 29 & 30
West Springield, MA
Big E Better Living Building
Old Deerfield Craft Show

Dec 5 & 6
Bethlehem CT
Christmas Town Festival

About Birdhouse Accents

  • I started making birdhouses about seven years ago as a hobby for family and friends. Somewhere, someone had the brilliant idea that I "should sell those things". I tried it and since than it has grown into a full time passion. I have always loved wood working and consider myself so lucky to be doing something I enjoy day after day.
  • Our inspiration comes from the many songbirds that come back year after year. Their melodious songs and cute antics have become an enjoyable part of our lives. We have many birdhouses in our yard, some big, some small, some new and some old. We have one in particular that we have hanging up in a tree now for over six years. It is dilapidated and falling apart. Our friends are always telling us to get rid of it, yet we have not been able to do that. A family of wrens come back year after year. We can't wait for next spring to watch them take over this dilapidated birdhouse, build their nest and raise their brood.
  • We love to take day trips and scout out tag sales and flea markets. Imagination is a wonderful attribute and plays out alot in the thought process of making a birdhouse. We strive to find treasures that are unique. Our birdhouses are one of a kind pieces. Many hours go into the making of a birdhouse. It could be a triple layer of paint that has been distressed, to a certain roof angle to give it just the right look, to something so odd that we feel it just has to sell. All our birdhouses are given a worn, aged look to them. We feel it adds to the character of the birdhouse.
  • We participate in many craft fairs throughout the year starting in March and continuing through December. We enjoy talking to people and try to answer all their questions from what type of bird would live in one of our birdhouses to how do you get those pesky squirels from taking over. We especially love the children. It is so exciting to see a little one trying to coax their parents into buying a birdhouse. We encourage this wonderful hobby of getting them involved in the world of birding and are always grateful when they listen to their child.
  • We try to recycle in any way we can. We ship in used boxes and use old bubble wrap from a kyack place down the road. We subscribe to the local paper. Another way to recylce packaging, who would have thought.
  • All our birdhouses are hand crafted and designed by us. Our birdhouses make excellent gifts for any occasion and are sure to put a smile on someones face.
Fred & Lynn