What is the role of birds in nature?
Birds play a major role in biodiversity. Consumption of insects harmful to agriculture, dissemination of seeds for reforestation and pollination of plants, these are some of the unavoidable facts that testify to the usefulness of birds.
Certain species of birds feed on white grubs, a plague on the lawns of our region. Several municipalities suggest that their citizens install nesting boxes and other shelters for winged animals. In addition, a birdbath in a yard is sure to attract several species of birds.
White grubs are the larvae of various species of cockchafers that cause considerable damage to lawns in city parks and home yards.
A familiar bird with an orange breast, yellow beak and a pretty white crescent around the eye, the American Robin is fond of earthworms, grubs and other insects.
The gardens and courtyards of homes located near a wooded area can be visited by the tawny thrush, the lone thrush and the wood thrush. These three species of the Turdidae family, the same as our blackbird, like to scratch the ground in search of worms.
Starlings, Red-winged Blackbirds, Common Grackles, Common Grackles and American Crows may also eat white grubs and other insects.
In the early stages of a grub infestation, damage to lawns is not yet apparent. The presence of birds scavenging the soil is often an indication of the presence of grubs.
The grosbeak and the budworm
The Evening Grosbeak, a yellow bird with a prominent beak, devours the larvae of the spruce budworm, a scourge that is still active in some northern forests. A notable increase in the population of the species can be observed during the years of the budworm’s infestation cycle.
In the garden, birds swallow midges, larvae, and other insects that are harmful to plant growth. For example, blue jays remove nymphs from silky cocoons and take several of them in their beaks at a time. By destroying these cocoons, the jays prevent thousands of lepidopteran eggs from hatching the following spring.
Sow in any wind
Watching it guzzling at a feeder, one may be surprised at its greediness. He is not only a little gluttonous but also very farsighted. He takes food with him to stock up.
He also adopts this behavior in the forest. It also carries oak acorns and beech faines to hide them under leaves, in the grass or in cavities in the trees.
Like the squirrel, the blue jay does not always find its loot, thus favouring the regeneration of forests.
Other bird species, such as the black-capped chickadee, also carry food, thus spreading the seeds in the wild.
The fir grosbeak is fond of hanging fruit from vinegar and other fruit trees. As it eats its meal, it throws the seeds to the ground, sowing in any wind.
The hummingbird is a small bird that plays an important role in biodiversity by participating in the pollination of flowers. When the hummingbird harvests nectar, the dust of pollen settles on its head and beak, which is then spread on the stigma of receptive flowers.
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