The Ideal Bath
Birds don’t always have humans around to build bird baths, so what do they use in the wild? If you thought of a shallow creek or a puddle, that’s correct! These tiny bodies of water give easy access for drinking and bathing. So, to create the ideal bath, a bird bath should mimic certain characteristics of a puddle.
The perfect bird bath needs to be shallow with a sloping descent to the deepest part. At the edges, the water should be 0.5-1 inches deep and no more than 2 inches deep in the center. The bottom of the bath should be shaped like a wide, shallow bowl.
A bird bath should be placed on the ground or close to the ground. A few sticks or stones should be arranged so a bird can drink without getting wet. During freezing weather especially, the bird shouldn’t have to take a dip to take a sip.
Shelter, such as a bush, should be provided nearby for predator protection. However, shelter should not be located right next to the bird bath—birds should be able to see predators coming.
There should be open space between the bird bath and closest shelter, but also not too far away. In addition, the water will be kept cooler if the bath is placed in a shady spot.
Birds are partial to dripping water—it attracts them. This can done yourself by hanging a container, with a small hole, above the birdbath. Fountains can also be enjoyable for birds. However, concerning fountains, there should still be wading space and “dry” areas where a bird won’t get splashed.