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April News from

Wild Bird Habitat Store

connecting families with nature for 19 years

Spring Bird Migration is Underway

April, 2014


 Friends of Wilderness Park

Wilderness Park Visitor Education Survey


Friends of Wilderness Park Native Plant Sale

New WBH Logo   

Frequently Asked Questions


As a special feature for April I thought I would address some of the frequently asked questions by our customers. Information on these and other topics are available at the Wild Bird Habitat Stores. Just ask the staff at Wild Bird Habitat, one of the nation's leaders in the birding industry.


Ask Dave


Wild Bird Habitat Stores 
 Alamo Plaza Store
South Lincoln, NE in the Alamo Plaza 56th & Hwy #2
Mon - Fri 9am to 6pm
Saturday 9am to 5pm
Sunday 11am to 4pm
(402) 420-2553
4840 Orchard


North Lincoln, NE in the white house at4840 Orchard St


Mon - Fri 9am to 5:30pm
Saturday 9am to 5pm
Sunday Noon to 4pm
(402) 464-4055
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Time to think
Purple Martins
The Wild Bird Habitat Stores
Purple Martin
Time to think
PVC Bluebird Box
sparrow resistant
Birding App
for smart phones

A new updated library of professional color photographs that show the diversity of birds as you see them, in their natural habitat, by gender, age, and seasonal plumage variations (with over 3,150 completely new, high-resolution images).

Journaling your personal birding observations has never been easier. And best of all, your critical sightings and lifelists can be linked to your own Personal Nature Account with AudubonGuides.com.

When combined with over eight hours of exceptional birds sounds, the most complete field guide descriptions, and much more, there is no wonder this has become America's hottest birding app!

The updated Audubon Birds app is the most comprehensive digital field guide to North American Birds available. The best bird app just got better!


April Bird of the Month


Red-winged Blackbird

The Red-winged Blackbird may just be the most numerous native bird in North America. Their population has increased significantly in the later part of the 20th Century from several hundred million some 40 years ago. They have become a common sight atop swaying cattails along wet roadside ditches, or perched on overhead lines.


 When growing up this bird was found mostly in the marshes and wetlands of the Midwest and Central Great Plains. As a kid I remember running through the fields dotted with cattail marshes and dissected by Beal's Slough through the area where the Alamo Plaza now stands. Back then Pioneers Street was the extreme south edge of Lincoln and in a matter of minutes from our home we could be in the wide open spaces where these blackbirds would squawk their disapproval if we neared their nest....read more


Dave  Dave's April Bird Chatter

The Snow Geese, Sandhill Cranes and many ducks have passed through on their way to their northern breeding grounds. It was another exciting season viewing the geese and cranes, but migration is far from over. April is one of the three most exciting migration months of the year. We will once again welcome back many of our summer favorites to the yard; the brown thrasher, catbird, towhees and chipping sparrows to name a few. The Rose Breasted Grosbeak and Orioles are two of the Neo-tropical migrants everyone enjoys welcoming back...read more


Nest Boxes

Many birds nest in tree cavities, so a nest box is essentially providing them that same nesting habitat. That's why placing a nest box on a tree trunk is often an effective way to mount a box. At the store we also have poles for mounting boxes right where you want them. Species that use nest boxes include: Wood Duck, American Kestrel, Eastern Screech-Owl, Woodpeckers (Red-headed, Red-bellied, Downy, Hairy and Flicker), Purple Martin (colony nesters), Tree Swallow, Black-capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, White-breasted Nuthatch, Carolina Wren, House Wren, Eastern Bluebird and House Finch.


Wild Bird Habitat has nest boxes that are the size appropriate for each species. They are made of natural cedar, Cyprus, or durable recycled composite plastic. These houses have thick walls to insulate from heat and cold. Drainage holes allow moisture to drain through and ventilation slots provide for air flow. They also have an easy way to swing the door open for cleaning. We also have do-it-yourself kits and many decorative style houses in a variety of artistic shapes, colors and sizes. Another unique option is our Window View Nest Box that mounts to a window, allowing you to view the nesting birds.


Nesting accessories include portal protectors, metal rings that can be attached to the nest box opening that will prevent larger birds from entering or pecking a bigger hole and keep predators from gnawing into the box. Nesting materials that consist of five natural-colored materials preferred by birds: feathers, string, cotton, hemp and aspen fiber. This mixture will attract many more birds than cotton only. (Avoid dryer lint as it retains moisture in the nest.) Nest material can be presented to the birds with our hanging Songbird Essentials Nesting Wreath and Birdie Bell. This material will benefit all nesting birds.


Attracting Orioles Oriole Feeding

Most birds migrate at night, spending daytime hours to forage for food and rest. When they arrive at a location in the early morning hours these birds are cold, tired, and hungry. The first thing they will do is to locate a source of food.....read more


Enjoying Summer Bird Feeding More

As if our attempt to outsmart squirrels isn't enough of a challenge, spring and summer brings additional trials in our attempts to keep black birds, the Common Grackle, from raiding our feeders and keeping the more desirable birds at bay.


One alternative to eliminate both squirrels and Grackles from the backyard bird feeder is to use Safflower Seed (Carthamus tinctorius) is an annual oil seed crop grown in the United States and Canada. It has a rather hard, white, outer hull. Safflower provides three principle products: oil, meal, for human consumption, and bird seed. As a bird seed product Safflower seed is high in protein. It can be used in any type of a bird feeder such as: tube feeders for House Finch, Chickadees, and nuthatches, elevated feeders for Blue Jays, Cardinals, and other Grosbeaks, and on ground feeders for doves. For many people who feed birds they have added Safflower seed to their backyard bird feeding program along with other feed products. It attracts a large variety of birds.


Squirrels will not eat Safflower seed, or at least 99.9% won't even if the feeder is hanging right outside their front door or placed on the ground. But caution! Do not mix other seeds with it or they will sift through the feeder picking out the other products. Use Safflower seed in feeders where you have a squirrel problem, or when there are no other possible alternatives to keep them off the bird feeder.  


Safflower seed is also an excellent feed to use when Grackles are over-powering the bird feeder, driving off all the other birds. It is not a very desirable food for Grackles, and often they just ignore it. You can virtually eliminate Grackles from your bird feeders by using Safflower. Again, however, do not mix in other seeds such as black oil sunflower, or the Grackles will sweep through it picking out their favorites. Use it straight in any bird feeder. If you live in central or northern states, immature Grackles may attempt to feed on it prior to migrating south. But when they return the following year as adults they show little interest in it.


Nutra Safflower seed, also known as "safflower gold" has the same properties as traditional safflower seed, but is much higher in oil content, leaves less mess from hulls, and is readily eaten by Goldfinch as well as many desirable birds.


Nebraska's Wild Life Conservation Fund
Since 1984, tax deductible donations to the Nebraska Wildlife Conservation Fund have helped the thousands of wildlife species that call Nebraska home. Wildlife Conservation Fund projects help those species considered non-game, or those that are not hunted or fished. Funds generated from hunting and fishing license can only be used for game species conservation. The only funding for non-game wildlife such as songbirds comes from the Wildlife Conservation Fund. The dollars donated have a big impact since Wildlife Conservation Fund dollars are matched with other grants administered by the Federal Government. Every dollar donated becomes 4 dollars for helping our non-game wildlife species. Learn more about the Wildlife Conservation Fund and how Nebraska uses those dollars for non-game birds and other wildlife. You can donate one dollar or more on your 2012 State Tax Return or Google Nebraska Wildlife Conservation Fund and donate online. Check your state's wildife conservation fund at Teaming With Wildlife

Bridge to Birding

Connecting students and educators with birds and the great outdoors!

Bridge to Birding is a program designed to facilitate bird awareness and connect students & educators with the outdoors and the native birds foKid & Binocularsund in Nebraska.


Each Bridge to Birding kit contains
20 pairs of binoculars / 15 Birds of Nebraska field guides / Flying Wild curriculum & activity guide / Information about Nebraska specific birds
Kits are available for 2-weeks at a time and are FREE to check-out. Eight kits are available for check-out throughout Nebraska. The Wild Bird Habitat Stores will soon sponsor Bridge to Birding kits at Beatrice & Nebraska City Nebraska. Learn more at PROJECT WILD
Peregrine Falcon Nest Cam


On top the state capital building in Lincoln Nebraska you can watch Peregrine falcons nesting for their 10th year.

The Live Stream of the Peregrines is now available on the NGPC Blog. We are mixing things up this year by adding a second camera that has been placed right next to the nest box and will provide a close-up view of the action. 


Watch this pair of nesting Bald Eagles  

Through the genius of the Raptor Resource Project a 24 hour webcam has been placed so that the world may watch the growth and lives of a family of bald eagles.

Click here to view the Decorah Eagles

Heron on NestGreat Blue Heron Nest Cam

Thanks again to Cornell Lab of Ornithology for a great nestcam of a Great Blue Heron sitting on four eggs. The first egg is scheduled to hatch sometime during the last week of April. There are actually two nestcams presenting different views of this same nest.


 Follow the spring bird migration in your area at E-Nature

New App Lets You Find Birds and Enter Sightings From the Field

If you have a smartphone, you can now record your sightings while you're birding-and enter them into your eBird account at the same time. The app, made by Birds in the Hand, which developed the bird-finding app BirdsEye, works for both iPhones and Android phones. The program finds your location, times your outing, and keeps a running tally of the birds you see. Adding birds is easy with a smart search-most birds can be selected just by entering three or four letters. The app also lets you Find out more about the Android app or the iPhone app.

Birds Eye Birding 


BirdsEye is the leading technology for bird finding in North America and the only mobile application that guides you to the birds.  BirdsEye uses the millions of sightings entered every month into eBird.org to show you what birds are being seen near you, to let you know about rare birds in your backyard or throughout North America and to help you plan trips to find target birds.

Stay up-to-date on birds seen recently in your area / Browse Rare and Notable sightings locally and beyond / Find target species and browse birding hotspots / Manage and grow your life list

Nebraska Bird Library
click to go to bird library


Project Beak













The Wild Bird Habitat Stores

Family owned Backyard Bird Feeding Centers Since 1993


Toll Free:  (800) 606-2553

E-Mail:  [email protected]