Construct birdfeeders and set them up at home, at school, or at camp, and investigate bird behavior.
- Site: Anyplace that a birdfeeder can be placed
- Safety: No specific concerns
- Prep: Obtain possible bird foods, materials to build birdfeeders, tools to place birdfeeders, construction paper, pens, markers, etc. to conduct experiments.
- Use techniques of studying bird behavior related to movement of a feeder, eyespots, the presence of other birds, clay snakes, etc.
- Gather and interpret data from experiments related to the birds’ preferences of feeder type, food type, and other variables.
The youngsters build different types of birdfeeders and set them up to watch bird behavior. Different birdfeeders are constructed so that several experiments can be conducted using them. The students can gather data related to how birds respond to different types of food, movement, eyespots, other birds or bird drawings, clay snakes, etc. After a week or two, the students share their results with others.
Some species of birds are more aggressive than others. Jays and cardinals, for example, will dominate a birdfeeder. Other birds are not as aggressive and will share the feeder space with other individuals and with other species of birds.
What can you learn about the aggressiveness of birds by how the birds respond to each other at the feeder?
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