Grosse Pointe Woods, Michigan

20381 Mack Avenue
Grosse Pointe Woods, MI 48236
6 Blocks South of Vernier

 (313) 881-1410

Serving You Today Until 4:00 pm

Monday 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Tuesday 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Wednesday 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Thursday 10:00 am - 8:00 pm
Friday 10:00 am - 6:00 pm
Saturday 9:30 am - 5:00 pm
Sunday 11:00 am - 4:00 pm

Rosann Kovalcik Franchise Store Owner

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Molting

Being Seasonally Savvy: Help Birds During Molting Season

Just as people make seasonal wardrobe changes, many birds are beginning a transformation of their own by replacing their old and worn feathers in a process known as molting.

Molting is when a bird replaces some (partial molt) or all (full molt) of its feathers.

This complicated process requires a lot of energy and may take up to eight weeks to complete. Molting is so physically demanding for most ducks and geese that they can't fly and will molt in seclusion to avoid predators. 

Molting season varies by species and time of year.  Right now many birds are beginning their main molt of the year, however American Goldfinches are one of the last to molt. Due to their late nesting period, they won't start their molt until late August.

Distinguishing birds that are molting from those that are not can be difficult. Though some birds may lose patches of feathers and appear "balding," most birds' feather loss and replacement are far less noticeable.

Feathers are made of more than 90% protein, primarily keratins, so every molting bird needs extra proteins to grow strong feathers for proper flight and effective insulation.

Research shows that a consistent and reliable source of food actually helps birds grow higher quality feathers. Keep your feeders filled and also offer high-protein foods such as Nyjer® (thistle), peanuts, Jim’s Birdacious® Bark Butter® and mealworms, to ensure that your birds have the reliable source of protein and fats to help them with molting.

Visit us soon for all of the high-protein foods that will meet your birds’ needs. We have everything you need to help your birds keep going (and re-growing feathers) during this critical time.

Migration

6 Ways to Prepare Your Yard for Fall Migration

Attract migrating birds to your backyard by setting up an environment that mimics how birds naturally live and forage.

1. Understand fall migration.
When fall arrives, a bird's life transitions. Summer was nesting time, during which birds set up territories and raise babies. In fall, they are no longer raising families and most of these territories break down. Some birds flock up with their own kind and use the flock as a winter survival tactic, taking advantage of more eyes to search for food and watch for predators.

Some birds mix together with other bird species in a winter foraging flock. This loose foraging guild travels around, learning each other’s alarm calls to protect from danger. They also learn food foraging techniques from each other, such as searching up or down trees.

2. Attract birds with low-lying landscapes.
Overall, a varied, dynamic landscape that is not completely manicured will help attract birds during the fall. Take a look at your landscape, try to leave some natural roughage. If possible, leave weed-seed plants. Many birds, like finches, sparrows and juncos, love to work on them.

Put out a few brush piles. It gives birds a place to hide from weather and predators. It also gives them a place to loaf and socialize before and after eating at your feeders. Ground-feeding environments attract birds that avoid elevated food sources. Song sparrows like to feed this way and are just about everywhere in North America.

You also want millet-type blends. These are wonderful when offered in feeders that are near the ground or in an elevated feeder that allows some millet to be dropped to the ground.

3. Attend to bird feeding stations.
Fall is the perfect time to attend to your bird feeding stations. Take the opportunity to clean and repair your feeders now, because who really wants to care for feeders during winter weather?

Fall is also a great time to move bird feeding stations closer to the house. It will be easier to keep them full during winter’s cold. Plus, regularly moving feeding stations prevents buildup of debris under the feeder, making it healthier for ground-feeding birds.

4. Fresh food now to attract birds later.
As birds come through and decide where to stay, they are more likely to stay if they note a regularly available food source. Even if they are not hitting the food source on a consistent basis in the fall, once the weather turns cooler, they’ll remember where that reliable source is. By keeping food fresh now, even if it’s a small amount, the birds will reward you once the weather turns.

5. There are more food sources beyond seed.
Make sure you have high-quality fresh food and high-energy, high-fat foods. Wild Birds Unlimited seed blends have these qualities. Also, spreadable Bark Butter or Bark Butter Bits are great sources. Bark Butter in any form is a magnet for birds, and there are over 140 species confirmed that enjoy them. Once they try it, birds are all over it. Live or dried mealworms are another option. These foods help captivate migrating birds.

6. Provide a moving water source.
A moving water source is a magnet for birds. If a bird is passing through and they see or hear moving water, they will almost always check it out. They need open water sources for drinking and keeping their feathers maintained for flight and proper insulation as the nights get colder.

Stop by the store and we’ll show you the foods, feeders and other products to help attract migrating birds.

 


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