Birds Hate It

I recently got a new birdbath.  It is clear, yellow, looks great in the garden and can be seen from my kitchen window.  It is a replacement for an old one,  that the birds loved.  As it turns out, the birds hate this one.  I thought it was because of being clear, so I added some stones.  Not one bird has stopped by.

The new birdbath is easy to keep clean and always has fresh water in it, but that does not seem to be enough to entice the birds. The very cute Carolina Wrens prefer a bath in this toad station that is always dirty.

Or sometimes they use the rim of  the upside down fire pit when it holds water.

The wrens, Frick and Frack will even take a soak in plant saucers, which are not clean at all. Even the Cardinals prefer the water from the dirty saucers.

I found evidence of the Wrens enjoying a couples’ spa day.  After a soak they finished with a mud bath in the planter (notice two dents).  Sometimes we can try to do what we think wildlife would like, but it doesn’t always work out that way.  I guess the new birdbath will just have to please me and not the birds.

PS  I am shopping for a new one that they will like and I have another one that the rabbits and squirrels enjoy along with the birds.

10 Comments on “Birds Hate It”

  1. Maybe you could try some larger flat stones that are above the water. Or perhaps lay a stick across it from one side to the other. As is, it looks like a tricky landing spot.

  2. Tina says:

    Yes, been there! It might just take a while for your birds to get used to the new bath–that’s happened in my garden, though you’re certainly correct: sometimes we ‘think’ they’ll like something, but they have other plans.

  3. Interesting, I wonder if it is the color, like the center of a flower rather than water?

  4. Deb says:

    I agree with Marian that it’s maybe the bird doesn’t have a good place to land or to perch for drying off. It’s cute though. Those dirt holes in your flower pot are special, wish I could have watched that happen.

  5. shoreacres says:

    I have a friend who went through the same thing. She got a really classy bird bath, and all of the birds that had been coming to her big clay plant saucer disappeared. I wonder if your new one is too slick? It looks like they might slide down the sides, or maybe not feel secure on that ruffled edge. There’s a lot of mystery to bird preferences, that’s for sure. I use two clay plant saucers that generally have algae in the bottom, because I forget to wash them out.

  6. Sheryl says:

    I like the way your new bird bath looks. It’s too bad that the birds don’t like it.

  7. Charles M says:


    A few things come to mind:

    * Moving water is a sure hit with birds. You could try adding a small electric or battery operated pump.
    * The texture of the bird bath surface might not offer the bird enough traction to hold on.
    * The bath may be in an area that encourages predators.
    * The bath may not be in an area that offers the birds a quick escape in case of danger.

    The thing with commercial birdbaths is they are sold primarily with humans in mind. Birdbaths that attract birds may not be as pretty (though this is certainly not the case all the time), but they are sure to attract more bird.


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