Water Works! part one
Jul 31, 2019
Bird baths provide water for drinking . . .
Bird baths make a beautiful addition to your garden, as well as helping to attract birds to your yard.
Birds, like people, need water to survive.
They drink it, play in it and bathe in it. Unlike people, they don't have ready access any time they need.
Finding and using water requires birds to be ingenious. As with food, most water is located visually by birds. Even very small amounts of water can help sustain life, and birds will find and use what they can, anywhere they can. Puddles on the roadside, low spots in a field, leaking water faucets, run-off from lawns, condensation from air conditions. Some birds actually “drink” the dew off leaves and raindrops from pine needles.
Add a bird bath and you’ll find that birds appear. They are attracted to that sparkling surface that signals to them the presence of water. Most will drink by dipping their bills, then holding up their heads to allow the water to flow down their throat. A few birds, such as doves and pigeons, drink by actually sucking water into their mouths.
The amount of drinking water required by birds varies from species to species. Hummingbirds, whose diet is high in nectar, seldom need to supplement with plain water; they get sufficient liquid from flowers or feeders.
Insect eating birds also take in supplemental moisture from their diet of worms, grubs and other crawling things.
Even seed has some moisture that can help bird keep their systems balanced when water is scarce.
Birds living in arid climates make sure of water created by “cellular respiration” (water released as a by-product during the metabolic process) to keep their body chemistry stable and allowing them to go for longer periods without drinking.
Up next: Birds need water for bathing