IN THIS ISSUE:
New At The Nest
We have recently added over 100 new items in an effort to offer you the best backyard wildlife and garden decor products. Here are just a few of the many exciting products found in our Just Added category
Mother's Day Gifts!
It's not too late to find a great Mother's Day gift! Not only do we have a fantastic selection of products Mom will love, we also have a variety of shipping options to have the gift delivered on time. Here are just a few of our perennial favorites.
Current Clearance Items
Here are a few items recently added to our Clearance section. Stock may be limited, so hurry before they are no longer available!Orioles are quickly becoming one of the most popular birds to feed and attract. Though many of us are only familiar with the prevalent Baltimore oriole, there are 10 species of Orioles that can be found in North America. What makes orioles so special? Let's take a look:
Bird Profile: Orioles
Each month in 2004, BestNest will be featuring a species profile for the birds about which we receive the most comments and questions. We hope these profiles are both educational and entertaining, so please let us know if there is anything we can do to improve them. Enjoy!May 2004: Orioles
Worldwide, there are 24 species of orioles. All of them are found in either North or South America. 10 of those species are found in the United States. All 48 contiguous states have at least one species of oriole that returns to that area each spring; many states have several. The five most prevalent North American species, the Baltimore, Orchard, Bullock's, Scott's, and Hooded orioles, are all migratory. Their return from South America spans March 15 through May 15:
March 15: Southern Arizona, New Mexico, Texas
April 1: Southern California, Southern Arizona, Southern New Mexico, Southern Texas, Southern Louisiana, Southern Mississippi, Southern Alabama, Florida
April 15: Northern California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, Southern Colorado, Northern Texas, Oklahoma, Southern Kansas, Northern Louisiana, Southern Missouri, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, South Carolina, Southern Tennessee, Southern North Carolina
May 1: Oregon, Northern Nevada, Southern Idaho, Wyoming, Northern Colorado, Southern South Dakota, Nebraska, Northern Kansas, Iowa, Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Northern Tennessee, Northern North Carolina, Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Virginia, Delaware, New Jersey
May 15: Washington, Northern Idaho, Montana, Southern North Dakota, Northern South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, New York, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Vermont, Southern Maine.
After May 15: Southern Canada, Northern North Dakota, Northern Minnesota, Northern Maine
There are always exceptions to these dates; however, this is an excellent guide to when you can expect to see orioles in you area.
Orioles are actually part of the Blackbird family, which includes blackbirds, cowbirds, grackles, and meadowlarks. All North American orioles have a variation of black and orange or yellow plumage. Males tend to be more brightly colored, with deep orange and black feathers, while females tend to be a darkish yellow or orange with less black and more gray or brown. All North American species build hanging or semi-hanging nests, which often require the right type of branches for stability. They will not use man-made housing. Most orioles prefer deciduous trees (trees that lose their leaves during the winter months) to conifers (evergreen trees and shrubs); however, you will find them using confirms in the northwestern areas of their nesting range. Because their nests "hang", they require different nesting materials than other birds. Many people will put out string, yarn, cloth strips, etc. for orioles to use. Besides the longer fibers needed to suspend the nest, softer, more "downy" materials are used to line it. Oriole nests are quite resilient, and will often last through the winter even after the orioles have left for their migration.
Unlike other birds found in the backyard, Orioles have a diet that doesn't include seed. They primarily eat insects, fruit, and nectar. One of the benefits of attracting orioles is that they consume many different types of pest insects, including moth and tent caterpillars, grasshoppers, beetles, gypsy moths, and ants. They are also known to eat bees and spiders. Unfortunately, the use of pesticides to curb the spread of those pests can be very dangerous to orioles. If you are fortunate enough to attract orioles, do not use pesticides and allow the orioles and other birds (such as bluebirds) to naturally reduce the pest populations. You may also consider using mealworms to attract orioles. Mealworms are more often used for attracting bluebirds, but the orioles also use them to feed their young. In addition to insects, orioles love fruit and nectar. They are particularly fond of oranges, but will also eat apples, grapefruit, raisins, cherries, and cactus fruits. They are also very fond of grape jelly. Nectar is another important part of their diet. Oriole nectar is the same as what you would use in hummingbird feeders; however, many people make a less "rich" mixture by using 5 parts water to 1 part sugar rather than the 4 to 1 ratio used for hummingbirds. Oriole feeders do differ from hummingbird feeders. Primarily, they are orange in color and have bigger perches to accommodate the larger bodies of the orioles. They also have larger ports that allow for the larger oriole beak size. Many feeders have built-in features that allow orange slices, halves, or jelly to be placed on the feeder. There are also fruit and jelly feeders available that are suitable for attracting birds other than orioles. Like hummingbirds feeders, oriole feeders need to be cleaned and have the nectar, jelly, or fruit replaced on a regular basis.
If you are in need of a new oriole feeder, there are several different oriole feeders available at www.bestnest.com. We offer nectar mix and several informative books, such as the Stokes' Oriole Book. If you would like more personal assistance, please email us at email@example.com or call 877-369-5446.
The BestNest.com Giveaway Winner is George Kreider!
CONGRATULATIONS to George Kreider who just won a new Opus Expeditions Copper Hummingbird Feeder! To claim your prize, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and include your address information and telephone number. We may follow-up with a phone call to verify your address information and identity. Congratulations!
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