Placing a bird bath in your yard can create a focal center point for a garden area as well as providing water to the wildlife that inhabits your neighborhood.
Bird baths have been around since the mid 1800’s and provide a reliable source of water for birds and other animals. This is especially important in urban areas where a source of clean water for birds can be hard to come by. Many times they have to resort to small puddles or gutters for their water.
Bird baths are commonly a bowl of some sort placed upon a raised pedestal. Most are made of stone, glass, metal, ceramic or concrete. Any material that will hold water and stand up to outdoor conditions.
The bird bath itself should have convenient places for the birds to perch and should not be deeper than about two inches. If it is deeper than that, birds can drown especially if the sides of the bowl are slick and hard for the water-logged birds to get out of. This can be remedies by placing perching stones in the water to create a sort of island for the birds. You may also place sticks or rods that extend down into the water which creates a sort of ramp for the birds.
Placement of the bird bath is also important. It should be out in open enough to give the birds comfort that there aren’t any predators lurking nearby. It also helps if there is a tree overhanging the bird bath to allow the birds to quickly fly up and down from the bath.
Bird baths do require some maintenance. The water does need to be refilled in time of drought and it should be kept clean in order to prevent it from becoming stagnant and create a breeding ground for mosquitos. Some modern bird baths have solar-powered pumps which keep the water circulating.
Take a look at this gallery of bird baths for some ideas for your backyard: