Did you know the US has a history of feeding birds? Bird feeding is the second most popular hobby in the United States and the country also celebrates February as a National- Bird feeding month, this month is known to educate people about bird-feeding and watching. And there is no age for feeding words. In this article, we will be discussing on why elderly like to feed birds.
Elderly would like to feed the bird as they like bird feeding, it is best exercise for relaxation, emotional bonding, birds are easily accessible in that age, and to keep mental alienation away.
Five reasons why the elderly like to feed birds
Below are major reasons why the elderly would like to feed birds.
1. Therapeutic for senior citizens
Arguably, one of the best exercises for seniors out there is bird feeding and watching. The power of nature is immense and birding is a great way to relax and calm the mind in the lap of nature. In the truest sense, it’s an “old-school” hobby as it is nothing like the habits of 21st-century modern humans which are scrolling social media, eating out, smoking.
2. Birding is a way to practice mindfulness
People require immense patience to attract the birds and silently watch them as they flutter, fly and walk around, any loud movements and the activity might fail. Studies have proven seniors to have better heart health when they are interacting and spending time in nature. A great form of exercise– Apart from being a welcoming escape from modern-day life, birding can also be a great excuse for our elderly to move their bodies and exercise. It’s not heavy but requires enough movement of the body to walk, see, stop and watch. While people can feed birds in residential areas, the joy of feeding the birds in a countryside or forested area is simply unparalleled! If you are a birding enthusiast, take a walk/ drive over to the nearest sight possible and watch these marvelous beauties in their natural habitat.
3. Easily accessible
In case, you are unable to hike or move to the countryside to feed and watch the birds, you can practice this hobby in your gardens as well. Thanks to Amazon, we have several of these devices and tools that allow bird feeding easily. You can buy bird feeders, bird stations, trays, and other equipment to create a setup at your house. If you are seriously into the hobby, you should start researching and reading up on local birds and their natural habitats, try recreating these ecosystems back at home to make this a more enjoyable hobby.
4. Activating your sensory and mental system
Ageing can be tough. We understand that our brain and body start to get complicated and older. In order to keep our minds sharp, active learning is a big essential, and birding can be a great active learning habit. It requires you to study, understand and recreate environments.
This is also a beneficial sensory activity, it will help stimulate different parts of your brain and senses, and can be a great method to reduce anxiety and depressive thoughts. Apart from our bodies, our mental health requires equal attention, as age strikes we need to start indulging and finding new activities to generate our interest.
5. Helps fight alienation
Modern life has its own pitfalls, often we feel alienated and tend to have separation anxiety and this worsens as we age. A great way to fight this is by feeding birds. Birds are great companions, they are chirpy and intelligent, they will respond to your behavior and actions. Unlike having pets, birds are wild and free, they fly across and have a sense of community and they can definitely help lift your spirits up. Especially, in your old age, as you wheel away time seeing your children and grandchildren live their lives, these birds can be great mates.
So what are you waiting for? You’re never too old for a good hobby.
Why is bird feeding important?
Bird feeding is one of the most passionate and benevolent activities, it’s an act of pure goodness and promotes mindfulness. Given below are the reasons why you should also join into this great activity-
- Promotes mental and physical health– As discussed earlier, the activity can be a great boost to your physical and mental health and it requires reading, researching, getting into the act, watching the birds calmly, feeding them, and repeating this same exercise. Arguably, one of the best activities to do to promote mental and physical health.
- Helping the little birdies– Deforestation, Lack of habitat, harsh winters and reduced water supply, predatory birds and so many other factors are there that these little birdies have to fight. You can help them ease their struggle and can simply provide them some food and water, it’ll be a respite for them.
- Organic pest control– Birds are a great organic pest control method, they can hunt down rodents, insects in your garden and you can live your life peacefully. The presence of birds will automatically scare insects away and keep them at bay.
- Small steps on being an environmentalist– Being an environmentalist does not mean taking big steps, it’s about beginning your journey and starting with small steps and bird feeding can be one, it not only promotes life but also builds a natural habitat for these birds.
- Connect with nature in the most natural way.
What is the best thing to feed birds?
There are myriad options that you can choose from, you can feed- Seeds- Black Sunflower and Nyjer, Cat and Dog food, Live worms, Birdseed mixtures, Cracked corn, Peanuts, Rice and Cereals, Milk and Coconut, while these are all edible for birds. You can also provide these thirsty soules with some water.
Which birds are the most common in my backyard?
Yellow-rumped Warbler, Dark-eyed Junco, Morning Dove, Sparrows, American Crows, American Robin, European Starling, Mallard, Red-eyed Vireo- these are a few very common birds that can be spotted in American backyards.
Do birds know who is feeding them?
Initially, no but over time, if you regularly feed them they will know and come straight to you. Birds have great sight and sound sense, they listen to other birds fight over food and come to the feeder through that. If you consistently keep food at the same time during the day, you will start seeing more and more birds visiting your feeders.
In the US alone, on average 57 million households feed birds in their backyards, and many more hopping to the trend. Overall, if you are looking for a fun and simple pastime, go for bird feeding, it will bring out the best in you!