Introduction: Wild Life Around You
Our home garden hosts different kind of wild life, most of them made their permanent home on the trees. They are all over the garden searching for food and playing around. Their activity starts very early morning and lasts till sun set. Most of the species are birds other than squirrels, which are an exception.
This instructable is mostly our observation about the activities of these birds and squirrels
Step 1: Our Home Garden
We bought a small patch of land many years back for constructing a house. There was enough space in front of the proposed house site, so we planted fruit bearing trees all around. Now it is more than 15 years since we planted the trees and all of them started bearing fruits. Since then different kind of birds have visited the garden and built their nests on the trees. You can see some views of our home garden in the pictures above.
Let us see the habits and activities of these little creatures who choose to share their life with us.
Step 2: Kingfisher
There is no fish in the garden, but couple of Kingfisher birds choose to make their home here. The kingfisher's favorite spot is on the lower branch in the Mango tree. Just below the branch there is a small channel for drainage of water from our bath room (Not septic tank water). The bird catches small worms and insects from the channel for food. Most of the time you can find this bird sitting on the branch.
Please see the video of this bird
Step 3: Jungle Babblers
The jungle babbler (Turdoides striata) birds always forage for food in groups. Due to this habit, these birds are popularly known as Seven Sisters. They are very social and do not migrate. They also like to play in water. Their food is mainly insects and worms from the ground. Please see the pictures here where these birds forage for insects in the garden and also taking dips in the water kept in a bowl for the birds.
Step 4: Myna
Mynas are birds belonging to the starling family. Their main food is worms and insects in the garden. There are so many species of Mynas. What you see here in the garden are known as Common Myna
Step 5: Greater Coucal
Greater Coucal, also known as the Crow Pheasant belongs to the Cuckoo order of birds. One of these birds fell into the water tank while trying to drink water. We have saved this bird from drowning
Step 6: Crows
Crows are very common in our place. They are mostly scavengers. They build their own nests to lay their eggs with small dry sticks fallen from trees. here you can see a crow collecting branches for its nest.
Step 7: Cuckoo
Cuckoo birds live on trees but do not build their own nests. The picture you see here is a female cuckoo bird. This bird is waiting for the crows to build their nests and lay eggs. Then this will disturb some of the crow's eggs and lay its own.
I have tried to locate a male cuckoo but could not get clear view of it. Please watch the video where you can see the head of the bird. However you can hear the sound made by the bird very clearly.
Step 8: Sun Birds
Sun birds are the smallest birds in the garden. They most ly feed on the nectar from the flowers. Many times I have observed them playing on the large leaves of the fig tree.
Step 9: Parrots
Parrots are not residents of the garden. They are here only to eat the ripe mango fruits. it is very difficult to spot them in the trees as they mingle with leaves. Here you can see the fruits eaten by the parrots
Step 10: Squirrels
Squirrels in our garden mostly like to eat the pomegranate fruits. So, I have earmarked one tree specially for them. Though, the squirrels used to forage on fruits and nuts, I was surprised to see one squirrel feeding on scattered food from the dog bowl.
Please see the video of squirrel eating food particles scattered near the dog bowl
Step 11: A Migratory Bird in the Garden
After I constructed a small pond in our garden and added some fish, I spotted this bird near the pond. It caught all the fish from the pond and then vanished. I think this bird is known as Little Bittern, a migratory bird, but I am not sure.
Step 12: Nests
I could spot only two nests in the mango tree. I think one in the lower branch in the first picture is of squirrel. The other nest in the second picture is large and built on one of the highest branches of the tree. I am not sure of the species which built the nest in the second picture.
Step 13: Bottom Line
Most of the birds who made their home in the garden don't do any harm to the plants. Rather they help in eliminating insects from the garden. I have placed bowls of water for the birds which are regularly filled up. Even the honey bees like to drink lot of water during summer months from the bowl. We have placed some old tyres and tubes in the mango tree for the birds to perch on and play. We do not use any pesticides which are harmful to the birds.