National Bird Day

Beautiful, majestic, clever, and utterly melodious, birds have always had a special place in people’s hearts. On social media, we often see them performing unbelievable tricks or simply being their outgoing, comedic selves, especially cockatoos and parrots. However, looks and talents aren’t the only things that make these winged wonders amazing—they contribute a lot to the ecosystem, too. In fact, without them, mother nature won’t be able to function normally nor maintain an environment that can support life.

With bird populations declining and hundreds of bird species on the brink of extinction, we celebrate National Bird Day every 5th of January to raise awareness about birds and encourage people everywhere to do their part in making the world a better place for our feathered friends.



5 Reasons Why We Need Birds


Birds keep pests at bay

Since the majority of birds eat insects, worms, and snails, they play a huge role in controlling the number of pests present in the environment. According to BirdLife.Uk, birds eat over 400 to 500 million insects per year! A species of bird known as the Evening Grosbeak has also helped control a worm outbreak in a particular area in the Americas. In addition, many birds help keep marshlands healthy and thriving by removing pests, like the Salt Marsh Periwinkle snails, which would most likely destroy all forms of vegetation in and around the body of water.


Birds pollinate plants

Bees and butterflies aren’t the only ones keeping plants healthy—birds are, too! Hummingbirds and honeyeaters, in particular, contribute a lot to plant pollination, especially when it comes to unscented species of vegetation. While bees and butterflies are drawn to sweet, inviting smells, birds are all about the visual appeal. The most amazing thing is that birds pollinate around 5% of the plants we use in food and medicine.


Birds prevent the spread of disease

Yep, you read that right! Birds, specifically, our quite scary-looking vulture friends, prevent the spread of disease by keeping the environment free of rotting flesh—including disease-ridden ones. With their incredible sense of smell and powerful pair of wings, these skillful birds are known to arrive at the scene of the crime days before other scavengers do. They’re also extremely meticulous when it comes to devouring remains, always making sure they’re not leaving anything behind.


Birds scatter plant seeds to new locations

We all know how important plants are to survival. Without them, we’d die of extreme heat or oxygen deprivation. Lucky for us, our feathered friends got our back! As birds travel from one location to another, they bring with them the seeds they’ve eaten and scatter them, allowing plant life to grow in other areas.


Birds keep coral reefs alive

You may be wondering, “How on earth can animals that fly through the air help coral reefs that are below the water’s surface?” Well, believe it or not, but just like soil, coral reefs grow and thrive when provided with fertilizer; which, in this case, are seabird droppings. One study proves this to be a fact when the researchers found that waters near islands with high bird populations have faster-growing fish and healthier coral reefs compared to those that didn’t.



 4 Ways You Can Help Our Feathered Friends


Stop Buying Birds from Pet Stores

Pet trade is one of the major causes of the decline in the bird population. With birds being one of the most popular pets today, more and more people want to participate in trapping and capturing birds for profit. However, if there’s no demand for them, no one will take an interest in selling them. While it’s not that easy of a task, little by little we can help reduce the demand for pet birds by refraining from supporting pet stores that sell them.


Tint Glass Windows and Doors

Did you know that about 988 million birds die because of glass collision every year? Unlike humans and other mammals, birds don’t see glass as a barrier. Most of the time, they see the images that reflect on the glass and, thinking it’s an open space, fly towards it at full speed. Getting our glass doors and windows tinted or placing some kind of colored cloth against them can help make it easier for our winged friends to avoid bumping into solid surfaces.


Build a Bird House

Many birds are facing habitat loss and destruction because of logging, land developments, agricultural expansion, and deforestation. This not only makes it difficult for them to find proper nesting areas but, because of limited space, also causes them to act aggressively towards other birds to secure their homes. Less aggressive birds are often left homeless and vulnerable to predators. So if you’re looking for a way to observe National Bird Day, we highly encourage you to build a bird house or maybe even have a birdhouse-building contest with your friends or family. Afterward, everyone can position the birdhouses they made in safe areas outdoors, at least 5 to 30 feet above the ground, for birds to use.


Support Bird Conservation Organizations

Another great way to help birds is to support bird conservation groups and organizations. If you want to get involved, many of them offer memberships that allow people to participate in bird conservation campaigns, fundraisers, meetings, and events. However, you may also volunteer your skills to help with bird conservation projects and social media promotion, as well as provide a monetary donation.

Here are a few reputable bird conservation organizations you may want to check out:


What are your plans for National Bird Day?