Check out these beautiful Bird Photo Booth photos from the talented Joe Ciferno Jr.
Joe set up his Bird Photo Booth bird feeder equipped with a GoPro camera on a frigid -8 degrees day, in Pennsylvania.
Just minutes later, he was shocked to see such a wide variety of hungry birds show up for their first Bird photo sessions. Subzero temperatures didn’t stop a woodpecker from swooping in for some close-ups.
It’s surprising to see, just how well birds adaptions, behaviors, and relationships with humans, have enabled them to thrive -even during some of the most severe cold and hot climates.
So you might wonder how do birds survive the cold?
Here are some bird behaviors, which help birds fight against the cold.
- Shivering/dancing: Birds may do a little dance and shake to raise their metabolic body heat. This helps them stay a little warmer during the extreme cold.
- Fluffing feathers: You may notice Birds fluffing their stuff. Birds do this not to impress other birds, but instead to create air pockets for additional warmth in cold temperatures.
- Roosting /large group hugs: While there are no local bird hostels ,many small birds will gather in large flocks at night and crowd together in a small, tight space to share body heat. Popular group hugging spots occur in trees, brush, and areas that have residual heat from the day’s sunlight, such as the trunk of a tree or near any dark surface.
- Standing on one leg /yoga : Have you seen a bird standing on one leg or crouched to cover both legs? Birds are not meditating or doing yoga – they do this with their feathers to shield them from the cold and to conserve energy.
A few Physical traits which help birds stay warm..
1.) Birds are warm-blooded and have a higher body temperature than humans- average body temps. are around 105 degrees.
2.) Bird Feathers – Feathers not only look beautiful, but function to provide insulation during the winter season. Birds can grow extra feathers to add additional protection and warmth during winter months.
3.) Bird Legs – you may have noticed some weird looking scales on bird’s feet. Theses scales might look a little strange, but they can help birds reduce heat loss. Birds can even control the temperature of their legs and feet independently from their bodies, by regulating the amount of blood flow, which either reduces or increases heat depending on the surrounding temperature.
4.) Extra fluff, fat, and food birds will build up fat reserves to serve as insulation and extra energy for generating body heat. Many birds feast and store food during the fall when food sources are available, giving them a becoming extra fatty layer and food reserves in preparation for when winter arrives.
How can we help birds thrive?
- Notice birds!- No you don’t need to carry binoculars or call yourself a birder. Simply caring and understanding how important birds are to our environment, will better your daily life and aid in birds survival.
- Share your bird sightings – Sharing your passion for birds may spark others to become interested in birds, and understand why birds are so awesome.
- Feed birds year round. Feeding birds is fun and rewarding. Watching birds behaviors never gets old. Keeping your bird feeders full, will help birds build up extra fat reserves, to survive a cold winter season. They also look cute with some extra fluff.
- Offer high quality fine dining if you can. Providing quality bird seed helps birds to develop healthy feathers and gives them the energy they need to survive the cold.An abundant bird food supply, prevents birds from having to search for food on the hottest and coldest of days. The better quality and variety of bird food you provide- the more birds you will see!
- Provide water on hot days or a heated birdbath during the cold. Water is essential for bird’s survival. Providing water such as a birdbath will attract new birds to your backyard! The sound of running water will bring tranquility to your backyard oasis and invites birds to cool off and chill out on the hot days. A heated birdbath gives them water to drink during freezing conditions.
- Provide shelter / group hug hotspots – Plant native shrubs and trees to give birds additional natural materials, to bundle up and keep warm.