Checkout our special July edition of

July News From
The Wild Bird 
Habitat Stores

Connecting people with nature since 1993
right in their own backyards
July Newsletter link below
Birding information you can use
July News Notes:
from Wild Bird Habitat


  • This has been another great early summer for feeding birds.
  • Don't be alarmed if birds slow down feeding during hot summer days.
  • Keep fresh water available for the birds in your yard.
  • Many birds will be bringing their young to the feeders. Keep a close eye out.
  • Pick up a bird identification guide and learn to use it. Take it with you on vacation.
  • Birds such as robins, bluebirds, cardinals and others will work on a second brood.
  • This is the main nesting month for American Goldfinches and Cedar Waxwings.
  • Keep the suet feeder filled as it will remain a popular treat for woodpeckers.
  • Purple Martins will be finished nesting by months end and getting restless to leave.
  Read more in Dave's Bird Chatter for July  by clicking on the link below to  Wild Bird Habitat's July Newsletter


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Are The Orioles Gone?

NO!  I have had several folks ask me if the orioles have left. Every year about this time that question arises. Just the other day a woman had put her oriole feeder away because the orioles had stopped showing up.

This is the time when orioles have young in the nest and their attention is devoted to feeding their nestlings. Each adult will make several hundred trips each day to the nest with insects to feed the demands of these young chicks. During this period they will not frequent the oriole feeder as they had earlier in the spring. And if they do it is very quick and sporadic.

Once the female lays a complete clutch of 3 to 7 eggs she will begin incubation which lasts up to 14 days. After the eggs have hatched it will be another 14 days of feeding these young birds until they are ready to leave the nest. So for approximately 28 days the adults are busy raising a family. But once the nestlings have fledged the nest not only will you see the adults return to the oriole feeders, but they will have their young in tow with them.

The female departs for the tropics first usually by the end of August. However the male oriole will remain on its territory with the young until approximately mid-September before they begin their journey south.

So don't be alarmed if all of a sudden you do not see the orioles coming to your backyard oriole feeder. Just keep the feeder stocked with fresh oranges, citrus fruits, and jelly and you will be rewarded during the summer as it winds down.

special edition
An American Treasure
Don't miss it - just scroll down

Wild Bird Habitat Store's  Newsletter
Published by the Wild Bird Habitat Stores
Click on
to find out
  • What is the "bird of the month? Often called the Patriotic Bird, but its not the Bald Eagle
  • Read "Dave's Bird Chatter" for July
  • Check out our July bird notes
  • Find out about 2 premier gardening shows
  •  and more birding news
A comprehensive guide to the birds of Nebraska, seasonal occurrences, where they occur, and information on over 500 birds that reside, nest, or migrate through the state including maps for locating birds. Click on: 
Nebraska - birding doesn't get any better than this anywhere on the continent
Keep The Suet Stocked
Downy Woodpecker on an upside down suet log

Did you know woodpeckers will consume more suet from March to the end of summer than any other time of year, including during the winter months? The nesting season requires high a lot of energy, and although backyard bird feeders only provide about 25% of a birds diet, suet is in high demand for woodpeckers.

Although the incubation period for woodpeckers is around 12 to 14 days, the nestling period lasts up to almost 30 days. That's a long time for adults to continually feed their young before they are ready to leave the nest. And once they do - don't be surprised to see the adults introduce them to the suet feeder in your yard.

In the mean time, here are some fun woodpecker facts -
  •  Most woodpeckers have four toes.  Two face forward and two face backward.  This arrangement is called zygodactyl.
  •  Their short legs and sharp nails make it easier for them to cling to bark and even upside down hopping along branches and tree trunks.
  •  A pair of stiff, centrally located tail feathers which provides leverage for the woodpecker to strike the tree with its beak.  These feathers are not molted until their replacements have fully grown in.
  •  A straight, chisel-like bill is used to excavate holes in trees for nesting and roosting.  It is also used for foraging insects, insect eggs and larva.
  •  Bristle-like feathers over their nostrils help to keep wood particles from being inhaled.
  •  Very long tongues allow the birds to "worm" their way in to hard to reach places.  There are hard, saliva coated bristles on the end of the tongue which aid in grabbing their prey.  The tongue can also be used for lapping sap, or reaching into a bird feeder to snag seeds.
  •  Woodpeckers gather acorns, nuts and fruit as well as bugs from tree surfaces.  Flickers on the other hand lap ants off the ground and probe in to ant hills with their long tongue.
  •  A woodpeckers bill strikes a tree at an amazing 12 MPH when drumming.
  •  The average woodpecker is able to peck up to 20 pecks per second! The woodpecker is able to peck so much without injury due to the air pockets that help to cushion the woodpeckers brain.
  •  All woodpeckers have a characteristic wing-beat pattern while flying:  3 flaps and glide, 3 flaps and glide.....
  •  Woodpeckers create new holes every year. Thus, old cavities become homes for secondary cavity nesting birds such as chickadees, bluebirds, wrens, owls, and others.

The Nebraska Sandhills
by conservation photographer Michael Forsberg

Ocean of grass. There is an 19,000 square mile ocean of grass 1500 miles from either coast in our nation's heartland. It is called the Nebraska Sandhills. It's treasures are its vast prairies, abundant waters, dark skies, diverse wildlife, and it's people who have made a life being stewards of the land. There is no place else like it. Protect it fiercely

  • Visit the Nebraska Sandhills via the
  • Learn more about the Great Plains photography of
  • And check out the
Seed tube bird feeders & Nyjer thistle bird feeders
Made in the USA / Lifetime warranty
#1 tube bird feeders on the market
Check them out below
With the 'dog days of summer' upon us I thought maintaining a clean bird bath worth repeating in the July newsletter. We have a lot of hot weather left.


The easiest way to clean a birdbath is to ensure it doesn't get dirty. While all birdbaths will eventually need to be cleaned, there are steps that can be taken to minimize the need for frequent cleanings.

A well maintained bird bath poses no  mosquito threats -
Water has a certain tension quality, enough that when a mosquito lays its eggs those eggs rest on the surface of the water and must remain on the surface for three days before they hatch. Once hatched the larvae sinks in the water until it becomes an adult mosquito. 

While the mosquito eggs are on the water's surface, if that water tension is broken the eggs sink to the bottom and will not hatch. That water tension is easily disturbed by adding water to your bird bath, cleaning your bird bath, a bird bathing in the bird bath, or a rain shower. So a well used and maintained bird bath is not breeding mosquitoes. It is the un-maintained bird baths full of stagnant water that is avoided by birds that promotes mosquito production.
Bird Bath Dripper

Wild Bird Habitat's 'bird bath drippers' are a way to continually disturb the water tension, create motion in the bath that attracts birds to the bird bath, and replenishes the bath on a regular basis with fresh water during times of high usage and evaporation. It does not relieve the chore of periodically cleaning the bird bath.

Wild Bird Habitat's battery operated 'water wrigglers' are another way to keep the water tension disrupted in the bird bath while creating motion in the water to attract more birds. 

For more information on maintaining a bird bath during the summer and all year long check out Wild Bird Habitat's article on  Bird Bath Maintenance

Just why do we call it the 'dog days of summer'?

The ancient Romans called the hottest, most humid days of summer "diēs caniculārēs" or "dog days." The name came about because they associated the hottest days of summer with the star Sirius. Sirius was known as the "Dog Star" because it was the brightest star in the constellation Canis Major (Large Dog).
Carolina Wrens
A bird feeder that has always been a favorite of mine since I began feeding birds some 35 years ago is a caged bird feeder. 

Caged bird feeders come with seed tubes which is perfect for feeding hulled sunflower seed, black oil sunflower seed, or specialty nut mixes. Others have mesh tubular inserts for feeding shelled peanuts. Either make a great woodpecker
Downy Woodpecker
feeder, especially the ones for shelled peanuts, and a safe haven for smaller birds such as the finches. 

European Starlings, Common Grackles, and squirrels are thwarted from being able to gain access, thus you are able to feed the more desirable birds you are trying to attract. One draw back is since it deters larger birds, it also makes it impossible for the Northern Cardinal to access. In that case I provide a platform bird feeder with safflower or Nutra safflower to attract them. Safflower is rejected by 99.9% of squirrels and is the least favorite of blackbirds.

Maybe it's time you added a caged feeder to your backyard bird feeding program. Check out Wild Bird Habitat's CAGED FEEDERS 
 Brome Bird Care
Effective Squirrel Proof Bird Feeders
Check out these amazing feeders below
The newsletter of the Pioneers Park Nature Center
Spring & Summer
One of Dave's favorite bird feeders 
Check out Dave's photos below
For the best seed tube bird feeders and Nyjer thistle feeders on the market its Aspects and Droll Yankees - hands down

Why? These are high end, quality wild bird feeders at an affordable price. Made in the U.S.A., and come with a lifetime warranty. 

DY Twist Off CC Fdr

These seed tube and Nyjer thistle seed feeders are easy to fill and even easier to clean with Quick Clean removable bases.

Unlike acrylic seed and thistle bird feeders you find at many big box outlets that can crack in cold temperatures or they become brittle from the hot summer sun, Aspects and Droll Yankees tubes are made from polypropylene - durable, UV stabilized, won't yellow or crack. (covered by lifetime warranty)

If you want a quality seed tube bird feeder or Nyjer thistle seed bird feeder, then you want  Aspects or Droll Yankees feeders - guaranteed for life..

Shop Wild Bird Habitat's Online Store
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Coming in 2020
North American Bluebird Conference
Hosted by Bluebirds Across Nebraska
March 12-15, 2020

The North American Bluebird Society 20th National Convention combined with 
Bluebirds Across Nebraska's State Conference and it all coincides with
Sandhill Crane Migration on the Central Platte River in  Kearney, Nebraska

Watch For Details

 Where to go  Birding in Nebraska
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

How to Identify Birds Without Using Your Eyes

From Bird Watchers Digest

As many a birder can attest, a whole new world opens up when we become aware of the incredible diversity of birdlife that shares our space. 

We hope this guide will get you well on your way to identifying birds solely by sound.

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


Holmes Lake  
an urban birding oasis
Holmes lake is an urban lake that boosts several types of habitat. Woody pine areas, mature deciduous trees, open prairie grasses along with shallow waters to open lake. It attracts a variety of wildlife, but its the birds it brings in that are the most diverse. During bird migration you are likely to find a variety of warblers. recently a Pine Warbler was observed. There are a variety of shore birds that stop over. Many different ducks. Osprey have been seen catching trout in the lake. Dickcissels, Meadow Larks, both Eastern and Western Kingbirds, native sparrows, the list seems to be endless. If a bird checklist were to be created for Holmes Lake I'm certain it would well exceed 200 different bird species. 
Need some help identifying birds? 

Answer five simple questions about a bird you are trying to identify and Merlin will come up with a list of possible matches. Merlin offers quick identification help for all levels of bird watchers to learn about North America and Europe's common and rare birds!

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.

The Audubon Bird Guide is a free and complete field guide to over 800 species of North American birds, right in your pocket. Built for all experience levels, it will help you identify the birds around you, keep track of the birds you've seen, and get outside to find new birds near you. Now with Bird ID Wizard

HARD COPY FIELD GUIDES form Wild Bird Habitat
 Environmentally friendly feeders!
Check out Birds Choice professional feeders below
Made in the USA / Lifetime warranty
 Is there a hidden danger in the spring plants you purchase?

Spring has finally arrived after a long harsh winter across the Central Great Plains. You rush to the many outlets to purchase your annuals and perennials for your flower beds. With all the concerns of the startling loss of pollinators and the high interest for installing pollinator plants for bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds you may have planned to create a pollinator garden this year. But unfortunately one may inadvertently be adding to the loss of pollinators in the plants you have purchased. 

Find out why in Wild Bird Habitat's April newsletter on page 6
That butterfly bush you buy may be toxic to butterflies

Wild Bird Habitat does not recommend the use of pesticides. But a new class of pesticides know as 'neonics' for short has raised an alert linked to the deaths of birds, bees, butterflies, earthworms, and more. Learn how to identify these pesticides at your local garden supply:

Published by 
for invertebrate conservation
The #1 cause for the loss of wildlife from birds to insects to mammals continues to be loss of habitat and human activity.
Shifting Ranges: 588 Habitats in a Changing Climate
Audubon Logo

In 2015, the National Audubon Society released a groundbreaking report called "Birds and Climate Change." This report detailed what we can expect for North American bird species in the coming decades. It focuses on the impacts of climate change on 588 avian species using decades of observations from Audubon members and our best understanding of what each species needs to survive.

In the most likely climate scenarios, the majority of the bird species studied-314-will see at least 50 percent of their current summer or winter range no longer suitable for them. Some species, like the purple finch, may see an increase in their expected habitable ranges because new habitats will become suitable as existing ones are no longer viable for them. Others, like the burrowing owl, are expected to mostly lose territory. Some impacts of climate change are unavoidable, but we can still protect many of the species we love. One of the most important ways to protect birds from the effects of climate happens to be one of the most important ways to protect birds in general: creating and protecting habitats. These strongholds should take into account both current and future bird populations. 

To view the redistribution of 588 North American bird species from 2000 to 2080 open the Audubon Field Guide. Select a bird (or search a bird species) then scroll down to the bottom and watch the changes in that birds range as habitats change due to a warming climate.

We hope you enjoy Wild Bird Habitat's monthly birding news
More birding info than you can shake a tail feather at!
How To Attract A Larger Variety Of Birds To Your Backyard

Want to attract more birds to your backyard? Want to attract a larger variety of bird species to your feeders? Birds have certain feeding characteristics. For instance certain birds will only feed at elevated feeders such as Chickadees and nuthatches. Others prefer larger perching areas. This includes Northern Cardinals and Blue Jays. Then there are those birds that like to cling; Downy Woodpeckers as well as Red-bellied and Hairy Woodpeckers and Northern Flickers. Some birds prefer to feed on the ground That would include Mourning Doves and our native sparrows.

The fact is that to attract a larger variety of birds to your backyard it helps to provide a variety of bird feeders that will accommodate the needs of the birds you want to attract. And of course what you fill those bird feeders with makes a difference also. For example birds that come to elevated bird feeders are primarily after the the nut meats such as black oil sunflower, hulled sunflower, safflower, and peanuts. 

Check out Wild Bird Habitat's article on the SEVEN BASIC BIRD FEEDERS that will guarantee bringing a larger variety of birds into your backyard. Also helpful is Wild Bird Habitat's BIRD FEED & BIRD FEEDER GUIDE where you can find out what bird feeders and wild bird feeds are suited for your favorite backyard birds.  

Our Best Squirrel Proof Bird Feeders

Check them out below 

Nutra Saff w Chickadee
If you are currently filling your seed tube bird feeder with a white Proso millet based general wild bird mix, try filling it with black oil sunflower seed, hulled sunflower seed, or Nutra Safflower seed. You'll be surprised at the difference in activity and the birds you attract to that seed tube bird feeder.

 Attractor Suet Plugs below - highly nutritious

#1 suet plugs on the market
Check them out below

Wild Bird Habitat's Squirrel Proof Bird Feeder Selection

When it comes to squirrels, Wild Bird Habitat doesn't only have you covered with our functional squirrel baffles, we offer a large variety of squirrel proof bird feeders, several with lifetime warranties, and all that can be repaired, not tossed because of any damage.
Nyjer thistle seed has always been the go to wild bird feed for Goldfinches. They will also feast on hulled sunflower seed. But Nutra Safflower seed has become a very popular feed for Goldfinch when placed in a seed tube bird feeder.

Nyjer thistle seed is imported from places like India, Burma, and Ethiopia. It is sterilized when brought into North America to avoid noxious weed seeds from germinating creating a relatively short shelf life which Goldfinch will reject if the Nyjer is old.

Nutra safflower on the other hand is grown by American farmers, is less expensive, attracts not just Goldfinch but a large variety of birds, and best of all squirrels ignore it.

NOTE: I have never observed Goldfinch feeding on traditional WHITE SAFFLOWER. However   NUTRA SAFFLOWER was hybridized from white safflower removing the hard white outer shell, raising the over-all fat content by 30% leaving a thin brown hull often referred to as safflower gold.

Best affordable 



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

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.
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.
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. 
Chicken Dance Trail

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

 Deter squirrels and blackbirds with Nutra Safflower & regular safflower
Everything you need to know - scroll down
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.

The Seed - 2018 
Nebraska Statewide Arboretum - Planting Nebraska for healthy people, vibrant communities and a resilient environment 

Late last summer I was contacted by Karma Larson of the Nebraska Statewide Arboretum to submit an article about my favorite bird to be published in "THE SEED - 2018". That became quite a challenge. I often kid with folks that my favorite bird is the one I'm looking at, at that time. A number of other birders were asked the same question as well. The results are most interesting. But apart from birders proclaiming their favorite bird, the article produced a vast assortment of information about birds. For example:
Crane Dance
  • "Every year 400,000 to 600,000 sandhill cranes-80 percent of all the cranes on the planet-congregate along an 80-mile stretch of the central Platte River in Nebraska, to fatten up on waste grain in the empty cornfields in preparation for the journey to their Arctic and subarctic nesting grounds." Smithsonian 
  • "How many caterpillars does it take to raise a nest of chickadee chicks? Native oak trees are host to more than 550 species of moth and butterfly caterpillars. The ginkgo, a common ornamental landscaping tree from Asia, supports only five species." Audubon
  • "A cedar waxwing eating dogwood fruits needs 230 berries a day. While we humans can't eat dogwood berries, we do love blueberries. So by comparison, if we ate the same amount of blueberries relative to our weight of, say, 140 pounds, we would have to eat 46,577 berries-a whopping 215 pints-per day!" Evansville Courier & Press
  • "Scientists have determined that the world's birds eat 450 to 550 million tons of insects each year. That's as many as 20 quadrillion individual bugs." USA Today
Read the full article about

It's entertaining, thought provoking, and informative with a terrific list of birding resources for every bird enthusiast

Learn more about the
Wild Bird Habitat Stores
recipients of the 2015
Gold Crest Distribution, Birding Business Magazine
& leaders in the Bird Feeding Industry
Alamo Plaza Store
South Lincoln. NE
Wild Bird Habitat Store

South Lincoln, NE location
5601 South 56th Street
In the Alamo Plaza
(402) 420-2553


Intergity Award

North Lincoln, NE
North Lincoln, NE location
4900 Dudley Street
(402) 464-4055

Toll Free Phone: (800) 606-2553

In Omaha visit
Omaha, NE
Bing & Luann Behrens at
Wild Bird Habitat
Harrison Village Mall
168th & Harrison
(402) 504-4450