Attract Orioles to Your Garden
October 28, 2013
One of the reasons we plant trees and continue to keep them in top shape is because they support our local wildlife habitat. Without the singing of birds or surprise of a butterfly, the landscape would be more than lacking. With the right plant choices and care, our gardens come alive with the wildlife they attract, including an abundance of bird varieties.
One of our favorites but less common local birds are Orioles. Here in North Texas we have the opportunity to spot a variety of Orioles, depending on the season. Common types to see in fall are Baltimore & Bullocks Orioles, who are migrating to Mexico for winter. The males are easy to spot because of their vibrant orange or yellow hue and black “caps”, although the muted tones of the females are also beautiful.
The females build their nests of straw, string, plant fibers and moss in intricate patterns suspended from tree branches, with a hole to enter and lay their eggs. While the male Orioles don’t help with the nest, they do help with feeding duties.
How do you attract Orioles to your garden? Trees are crucial for nesting and protection from the elements. Healthy trees in your landscape is always the first step to attract birds. By following an organic maintenance plan, you won’t destroy all the food for birds. Spiders, caterpillars and other insects are a major source of food for nearby birds. The birds act as the perfect natural pest control! Also, offer feeders specifically designed for Orioles and fill with sugar water, just as you would for hummingbirds. It's not unusual for Orioles to try hummingbird feeders, but their bills are often too big. Orioles love the color and taste of oranges. Offer orange halves on a branch or feeder.
What birds are you seeing in your landscape these days? We’d love to see them! Feel free to share your bird photos to our Facebook page.