The Wild Bird Habitat Stores
Connecting families with nature since 1993
in their backyards and beyond
Dave's favorite Hummingbird feeder
Get ready for the total SOLAR ECLIPSE
in Nebraska on August 21, 2017

Hummingbirds will start arriving in Nebraska by mid-August on their journey south for the winter. Checkout Nebraska's largest selection of hummingbird feeders, products and information for  attracting hummingbirds at the Wild Bird Habitat Stores
Bird of the month
Ruby-throated Hummingbird
This tiny jewel is the only one of the 16 species of Hummingbirds in the U.S. to regularly nest in the eastern part of the country. It is also one of the smallest of the species, weighing from 2 to 6 grams, or approximately 0.2 of an ounce. Ruby-throated Hummingbirds are medium to long-distance migrants. While the majority will spend the winter in Central America after flying nearly 600 miles across the open waters of the Gulf of Mexico, some will remain in far southern Florida and extreme southern portions of the gulf coast of the U.S. These are believed to be birds which nested far to the north. 
CLICK to read more
The molting season for birds will begin in August. Why do birds molt? Read below
NOW AVAILABLE 
Small,
Medium, and 
Large cages available
Protect your bird feeder 
from  blackbirds and squirrels
 
ADD A CAGE

Retro fit your existing seed tube bird feeder to be a safe
haven for small birds and 
woodpeckers
 

 Lethal Nesting Material for Birds
Find out what it is below
Dave
Dave's August Bird Chatter
It is difficult to ramble about what is happening in the avian world around the whole of the North American Continent, so I focus primarily on birding in the Central Great Plains. This is not the Midwest, but the center of the United States where the weather is so unpredictable us prairie people watch the weather forecast on three different TV stations, then actually go stand outside to find out who provided the closest guess. Then we decide, will it be a good day for swimming? A good day to stay inside and write a lengthy newsletter? Or maybe take a bird walk and wish you'd have brought rain gear when they predicted partly cloudy skies. Living out here on the plains the weather can be very unpredictable. The extremes can be colder than parts of Alaska, or as hot as the continental deserts. And the humidity? It can compete with that of Corpus Christie, Texas. But what is predictable is that the Central Great Plains is a bird lovers paradise. In fact Nebraska has recorded over 450 different bird species. Its a birding mecca.

CLICK to read more "Bird Chatter"
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In this newsletter read about Fairview, the orphaned Oriole nestling rescued from certain death and brought to the Wild Bird Habitat Store
The Molting Season, A Quiet Time for Birds
Why birds molt

After a busy nesting season where birds are in their bright breeding plumage those feathers have become worn and tattered. These feathers will be replaced ahead of winter to repair damaged feathers providing better protection against the cold. Also, many birds will molt into their basic more subtle plumage which is less noticeable to predators during the winter where it can be much more difficult for birds to conceal themselves.

Birds experience various degrees of molting
(replacing feathers), depending on the species. While a few will have a complete molt twice each year going from basic plumage into breeding plumage and back, other birds have one complete molt, usually in the spring. These birds will then have a pre-nuptial molt, or partial molt, in the fall. The partial molt replaces any broken feathers prior to winter. Still other birds will have a complete late summer molt where their bright breeding plumage is replaced with more non-conspicuous colors to avoid easy detection by predators in the winter landscape. The male goldfinch is a good example. The bright canary yellow becomes a less noticeable olive drab in late fall, much like the female goldfinch. Many first year birds will begin to molt from their immature or juvenile plumage into their adult plumage by the end of summer such as young Cardinals.
 
When birds molt they lose their feathers in a rotation sequence and new feathers are replaced in the same order. This lasts over a period of time, so molting is not a noticeable event, other than you may find dropped feathers on the ground in your yard. During the molting phase a birds flight capabilities are affected and as such, they are susceptible to predation. This can become a "quiet time" for some birds. Often they will avoid open areas, choosing to approach feeders that are located near the cover of shrubs and trees.
 
Wingtips: Here are some birds that have only one complete molt each year: Chickadees, Flycatchers, Hawks, Hummingbirds, Jays, Owls,  Swallows, Thrushes, & Woodpeckers.
 

Why do some birds migrate south while others remain in northern areas during the winter months? More on that below
The Rescue of Fairview - A Baltimore Oriole Nestling

Several weeks ago two maintenance workers at Fairview Cemetery on 84th & Adams discovered a small bird hanging upside down from a nest with both feet tangled in what appeared to be a sort of mono filament line. They climbed to the nest and cut the line which remained tightly knotted around the birds toes. They brought the young nestling to Wild Bird Habitat Stores in north Lincoln on Orchard Street to see what could be done to save him. It turned out to be a baby Oriole and the knots were tightly bound around it's tiny toes. I brought the youngster home where my wife Linda had powerful magnifying glasses she uses in her work as an RN. It took some patience but Linda was finally able to free the bird's entrapped feet. We also notice this young Oriole was covered in nest mites which may have been the cause for the bird's attempt to prematurely abandon the nest when it became ensnared.
 
We began feeding this Oriole nestling mealworms, at first by force until it began taking the worms from tweezers. We were also fortunate to have Elaine Bachel from Raptor Recovery offer to treat the bird for the nest mites successfully.
 
And so it began. We continued to feed the Oriole, now dubbed Fairview, once  an hour . In the wild the adult birds would have been making several hundred trips a day to the nest with food. The baby Oriole went to the store with us during the day where other staff members joined in the feeding process. 
 
Once Fairview was capable of flight Linda and I took her back to the cemetery hoping to reunite it with the parents. Although we located the nest with multiple monofilament lines dangling from it, the adults were nowhere to be found undoubtedly abandoning their failed nest. So we returned home and continued to feed the oriole now in the fledgling stage. With Orioles regularly visiting our backyard our best hope was Fairview would be accepted by them. It didn't look too hopeful though.
 
We started releasing Fairview in the morning to venture around the yard and neighborhood returning at various intervals to be fed. At night she'd return to the cage for the evening. Eventually the bird began spending the night in nearby trees showing up in the early morning for breakfast, and again throughout the day for mealworms. We have reached the point when Fairview does return to the patio table several times a day and feeds on the worms without our assistance.
 
With adult Orioles visiting our backyard and having young in tow making the same fledgling feed calls as Fairview, our best hope is that Fairview will be adopted by these adult Orioles, or at least flock with them and learn the routine of life in the wild. Although it is undoubtedly imprinted in Fairview's genetics to migrate, that will be the biggest challenge come September.
 
Wild Bird Habitat does not recommend attempting to rehabilitate an injured or orphaned bird as there are federal regulations which require a permit from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to do so and penalties for not following those regulations.  We did attempt to locate a licensed rescuer, but when that failed it became a matter of ethics verse legalities. Fairview's chance of survival when we received the bird was  almost non-existent. At least at this point Fairview is healthy and flying free. Will she migrate when the time comes and survive? We will never know for sure, but we certainly are hoping she will.
 
Watch for the latest updates on Fairview as summer wanes into September and the fall bird migration. 
Don't miss the tens of thousands of Purple Martins in Omaha as they gather in a pre-migratory flock. This late summer roost of Purple Martins may very well be over 100 years old. More information below. 
Lethal Nesting Materials
Oriole nest completely made from discarded fishing line

Birds must locate the materials to construct a suitable nest utilizing natural materials found in the wild. From sticks to moss, grasses to plant and root fibers each species of bird has particular material requirements and construction techniques.  Many birds, such as Orioles, strip fine durable fibers from the stems of plants such as nettles and marijuana to weave a nest.
 
Litter and discarded products by humans such as fishing line and other synthetic plastic materials appear as ready made plant fibers to these birds, but can prove to be a death trap for
Oriole nest from fishing line, Easter basket grass, frayed nylon packing cord
both adults and young birds as they become entangled in these man-made products. Fishing line poses a grave threat to many birds including shorebirds that become tangled in it, yet area lakes are littered with discarded pieces of these mono-filament lines. It is non-biodegradable and will remain indefinitely for many years Be a responsible outdoorsman. Pack it in - pack it out.  Litter can be hazardous to birds and other wildlife and ruins the aesthetics of a natural place.
 
These two Oriole nests made from discarded man-made synthetic materials available for view at Wild Bird Habitat Store south Lincoln
 
Wingtip: Oriole populations have declined nearly 70% since the 1960's due to habitat loss and human activity.
 

Read about the only USDA Certified Organic pet foods on the market and available at Arnie's Pet Food Store.
Check it out below on ARNIE'S CORNER
Why Some Birds Migrate
Ever wonder why some birds remain in Nebraska and northern regions during winter while others migrate to more southerly and tropical regions? Although some may think it has to do with the ability of some birds to endure cold temperatures, it is actually a phenomenon driven by food. Most all birds that migrate feed on insects, fish, or aquatic animals or specific vegetation that is non-existent in northern areas during the winter months. For these birds to survive, they must move to a warmer climate where they can locate their required food resources. Birds that remain in colder climates during the winter months are those that are adapted to survive on seeds, berries, and nuts. In the spring many birds that winter in the tropics migrate to North America to raise their families avoiding the many nest predators found in the jungles of South and Central America. Every year billions of birds travel thousands of miles between their winter and summer ranges, many of these birds weighing less than an ounce.
 

 Peanuts - Woodpeckers love 'em
A high energy treat / high in fat
Check out our peanut feeders below
Purple Martins  By The Tens of Thousands in Omaha
Beginning it late July and lasting through September Purple Martins congregate in a pre-migratory flock in Omaha as they prepare to head for Brazil for the winter months. By mid- August there can be as many as 30,000 to 70,000 Purple Martins soaring over the Omaha Medical Center at 44th and Farnam Streets before settling down in the ash trees that line the streets to roost for the night.
 
Since 2008 this flock of Purple Martins has caught the attention of area birders who now make an annual pilgrimage to few this amazing migration spectacle. Although Omaha Med Center personnel have been watching the Martins since the mid 1990's, photographs of a Purple Martin roost around 40th Street date back to the early 1900's indicating this Martin roost has been somewhere in the vicinity for at least the past century.
 
"The summer roost has become popular for spectators because the acrobatic flocks swarm and swoosh in military precision to the delight of old and young alike", says Omaha birder Jim Ducey. "The best time to see the Martins is about 8:30 p.m.", he said. Although the Medical Center opens its parking lots to accommodate people wanting to view the Purple Martins Ducey says spectators should be careful not to get in the way of emergency vehicles. "Martins roost together after they've reared their young and before they head south for the winter".
 
 
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Special offer on the #1 dental dog chews
PIONEERS PARK NATURE CENTER
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Summer newsletter packed with 
Nature Center news, events, activities,

 Nebraska - A top birding region in North America
Learn below where to go birding in Nebraska
Feeding Live Mealworms

Mealworms can add some excitement to your backyard bird feeding. Bluebirds will readily take these live worms when they are placed in a dish on or near the ground close to their nest box. They will collect them and return to the box to feed the nestlings. But what if you live in an urbanized area where bluebirds don't nest? Well you can still add mealworms to your backyard bird feeding menu. Robins, Cardinals, Jays and others will enjoy them as well. You can just toss a few on the patio, or put them in a dish. Just remember, when feeding mealworms it is best to ration them. Think of it as a daily treat for your birds. Do this at approximately the same time each day and you may find the birds will be waiting for you to deliver.
 
Mealworms available at Wild Bird Habitat Stores
500 count just $10.95

 Hard copy field guide or APP?
Get free bird ID APPS below from Cornell Bird Lab
ARNIE
Arnie's Corner
Arnie's Pet Food Store offers Tender and True pet foods. A Nebraska product, always antibiotic free, grain free, and USDA certified organic.  All meats in Tender and True are verified humanely raised and all seafood from certified sustainable fisheries. For certified all natural and organic premium ingredients f rom sustainable farms to your pet's bowl try Tender and True from Arnie's Pet Food Store, Alamo Plaza, 56th & Hwy 2.



When your pet is part of the family, make sure their food is held to the same standards as yours.






 


Tender & True -
The Perfect Pet Superfood Video

Learn about pet food from Dr. Tom Willard who is behind the formulations for Tender & True Pet Nutrition.

Cooper's favorite food: Tender & True



ARNIE'S PET FOOD STORE
Arnie's All Natural Pet Foods 
located inside
Wild Bird Habitat Store
Alamo Plaza 56TH & Hwy 2

Online at
Savings on GREENIES continues
ARNIE
Arnie's Corner
   
If you notice any of these signs of dental
problems, then take your dog to the vet:
  • Bad breath.
  • Change in eating or dog chewing habits.
  • Pawing at the face or mouth.
  • Excessive drooling.
  • Discolored, teeth.
 AVOID THESE CANINE DENTAL PROBLEMS
  Give your dog GREENIES
# 1 Vet Recommended
Dental Chew for Dogs & Cats
A Size for ALL dogs
 
Arnie's Special Offer On
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  •  SAVE $2 on one 6 oz. bag or larger of GREENIES canine dental chews plus a $1 bonus coupon
  •  SAVE $4 on one 27 oz. tub or larger of GREENIES canine dental chews plus a $2 bonus coupon
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ARNIE'S PET FOOD STORE
Arnie's All Natural Pet Foods 
located inside
Wild Bird Habitat Store
Alamo Plaza 56TH & Hwy 2
 
Online at

 WHERE TO GO BIRDING IN NEBRASKA
A top North American Birding Area
Nebraska Birding Trails

Listing more than 400 bird watching sites across the state of Nebraska. From the Missouri River Valley to the panhandle's rugged Pine Ridge, you'll find world class bird watching, scenic vistas, and a remarkable Nebraska Heritage around every corner.  nebraskabirdingtrails.com
 
 
Nebraska Metro Birding
Bird watching in seven counties in Eastern Nebraska. Find birding sites right out your backdoor in Cass, Dodge, Douglas, Lancaster, Sarpy, Saunders, and Washington counties. nebraskametrobirding.com
 
Central Nebraska, one of the major migratory routes on the continent. From Sandhill Cranes to Prairie Chickens, shore birds to prairie dog towns, it's an incredible journey you don't want to miss. nebraskaflyway.com 
Chicken Dance Trail

Chicken Dance Birding Trail, 27 counties in Southwestern Nebraska 
Birding in South Central & South Western Nebraska.  chickendancetrail.com.

 Environmentally friendly feeders!
Check out Birds Choice professional feeders below
Made in the USA / Lifetime warranty
Identify Birds with your Android or IPhone
Wildlife Rescue needs your help
Lear below how you can help 
Bird Bath Maintenance
It can be a challenge keeping a bird bath clean during the hot summer months. Algae is always a problem as well as debris left by the birds as they bathe and satisfy their need to stay hydrated. A good first step to reducing algae build up is keeping the bath in a shady area, but not hidden from view of the birds. Sun promotes algae growth.

Some folks may opt not to provide fresh water for birds in a backyard bird bath for fear of providing a breeding ground for mosquitoes. The truth is a well maintained bird bath which is regularly used by birds does not create a mosquito breeding ground. Water has a surface tension quality. Mosquitoes lay their eggs on the surface where it takes approximately 3 days to hatch after which the larvae sink into the water to mature as an adult. If that surface tension is broken by bathing birds or adding water regularly, the mosquito eggs sink to the bottom and do not hatch. 

Its a bird bath full of debris, stagnant water, unused by birds and not maintained that provides a breeding ground for mosquitoes. So it is essential to maintain the bird bath to eliminate a mosquito problem and provide fresh water for birds. 

CLICK for bird bath cleaning and maintenance tips

 Deter squirrels and blackbirds with Nutra Safflower & regular safflower
Everything you need to know - scroll down
Wildlife Rescue
During spring and early summer dozens of migrating and nesting birds become injured or orphaned. Volunteers are needed to help these birds recover and return to the wild.  

VOLUNTEERS NEEDED
Founded in 1979, Wildlife Rescue Team, Inc is a non-profit, independent, all volunteer organization dedicated to raising and rehabilitating Nebraska's injured and orphaned wildlife for eventual release back into their natural habitats. Wildlife Rescue Team, Inc relies solely on private private donations and contributions, membership fees, and donations of products for the benefit of ongoing rehabilitation efforts. 

YOU CAN HELP
There is always a need for cash donations as well as wildlife rehabilitators, phone volunteers, people willing to build cages, locations for animal releases, people to pick up injured or orphaned animals to transport to drop off locations, local businesses to provide discounts for supplies, and veterinarian assistance. 

Please consider joining the mission of the Wildlife Rescue Team to help orphaned and injured wildlife in Nebraska. You can make a donation or join online at wildliferescueteamincne.org. You may contact a team member at info@wildliferescueteamincne.org
Project BEAK
Bird Education Awareness for Kids 
Connect kids with birds below

Want to know what birds birders are seeing in your area?
Want to let other birders know what birds you see?

Its fun and easy at 
 
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It's Finally Ready and its all FREE to download
MERLIN BIRD PHOTO ID

Photo ID now in mobile apps

A new advanced version of the Photo ID tool is now available for download in the latest version of Merlin Bird ID for Android and iPhone. Select an image from your smartphone image gallery or snap a shot from the back of your cameras viewfinder, and Merlin will walk you through the 2 quick steps before showing you a list of possible species.



Learn more at PHOTO ID

Also the Merlin Bird ID app at MERLIN
Environmentally Friendly Bird Feeders
Birds Choice Recycled Feeders
Although the durability and natural look of cedar bird feeders continue to be preferred, the new line of feeders made from 100% post consumer recycled plastic is gaining in popularity. Many of these bird feeders have a lifetime warranty against fading, pealing, cracking, and chipping. They clean up like brand new, even after years of use. And speak of easy cleaning, many of the cedar and recycled plastic feeders we stock have removable perforated steel bottoms. This also allows moisture to pass through and the seed to remain dry.
 

Made in the USA
 
Wild Bird Habitat Stores
recipients of the 2015
Best U.S. Birding Retailer
from
Gold Crest Distribution, Birding Business Magazine
& leaders in the Bird Feeding Industry
Nutra Safflower for Goldfinch
Nyjer thistle seed has traditionally been the preferred seed of the American Goldfinch. The cost of Nyjer seed can vary greatly as it is a product imported to North America from India and Ethiopia and they set the price, and the price is rising once again. Nyjer is an oil seed which is why it is enjoyed so much by finches. In countries where it is grown this seed is crushed and used for cooking oil, much as in North America we crush black oil sunflower and safflower seed for cooking oil.

At Wild Bird Habitat Store we have received many reports and have had personal experience that Goldfinch readily feed on Nutra Safflower seed. In fact they may prefer it over Nyjer thistle seed. This could be a great alternative to supplementing Nyjer thistle seed for attracting Goldfinch. One benefit of Nutra Safflower is that this is a product grown by American farmers.

Nutra Safflower is available in 20 and 50 pound bags at the Wild Bird Habitat Store locations or by bulk quantity.

Internet customers can order Nutra Safflower seed on line. Although Wild Bird Habitat Stores Internet store offers free shipping on orders over $100, there is no free shipping on wild bird feeds. That allows us to keep our Internet wild bird feed prices low.   Order Nutra Safflower on line.

 

Peanut Feeders - A picture is worth a thousand words
Yellow-shafted Flicker
Downy feeding young
Hairy Woodpecker
Red-bellied Woodpecker
photos by Dave of Wild Bird Habitat

Check out Wild Bird Habitat's Peanut Feeders

 

Caged Peanut Feeders - Feed woodpeckers not squirrels & starlings
Yellow-shafted Flicker
Downy Woodpecker
Hairy Woodpecker
Red-bellied Woodpecker
photos by Dave of Wild Bird Habitat

Check out Wild Bird Habitat's Peanut Feeders

 

 Attractor Suet Plugs - Highly nutritious 
Best Woodpecker Suet Plugs

Attractor High Energy Suet Plugs available at 
the Wild Bird Habitat Stores

  • Roasted Peanut Attractor Plugs
    P-Nutbutter Logs
    Suet Log w/WP
  • Pure Attractor Plugs
  • Sunflower Attractor Plugs
  • No-Melt Peanut Butter Attractor Plugs
By the pack or by the case, woodpeckers love 'em



Nebraska Birding Trails
Nebraska Birding Trails Website 
Has a New Look
The Nebraska Birding Trails was developed in 2003 listing more than 400 birding sites across Nebraska. Chaired by Dave Titterington of Nebraska's Wild Bird Habitat Stores with members of the Nebraska Bird Partnership's Birding Trails Work-group which was comprised of members from government agencies, the University of Nebraska, Nebraska Travel and Tourism, Nebraska Ornithologists Union, and conservation groups and individual birders, it was an immediate success. Recently the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission with the help of Nebraska Educational Television revised the Nebraska Birding Trails website to give it a new look and make navigation locating birding sites easier. We hope you check it out at: 

NEBRASKA BIRDING TRAILS 

Two other websites developed by the Educational Work-group of the Nebraska Bird Partnership have also been revised. 

PROJECT BEAK
Project Beak
Project BEAK is an interactive, web-based curriculum that contains scientifically accurate information about avian conservation, avian form, function and other adaptations that help birds survive, Nebraska's unique avian biodiversity, Nebraska's threatened and endangered birds, plus video clips, interactive games, quizzes and diagrams, additional resources and links, and classroom lesson plans. 

This website is devoted to helping Nebraskans and visitors identify and learn about the over 400 species of birds which can be found in our state.  Are you trying to identify a bird you saw?  Use "search by characteristics", where you can search by size, color, range, and habitat. Or, you can search or browse the full Nebraska bird list by common name, scientific name, or bird group.

 Where to go  Birding in Nebraska
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4840 Orchard
(402) 464-4055
Alamo Plaza Store
(402) 420-2553
Wild Bird Habitat Store

South Lincoln, NE location
5601 South 56th Street
In the Alamo Plaza

      North Lincoln, NE location
                                                  4840 Orchard Street
                                      in the little white house

Intergity Award
                                      E-Mail:info@wildbirdhabitatstore.com

Toll Free Phone: (800) 606-2553

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