Facts About Duck Boxes

One of the best ways to attract wild ducks is through the use of a duck box. The use of the box is particularly to boost the number of ducks in several local populations. Before, wood ducks are abundant in several parts of the United States. However, due to constant hunting their numbers gradually declined. Constant hunting and land reclamations have nearly caused the extinction of this type of bird. Now, because of the changes in the law the wood ducks have increased in numbers. Wild ducks often use the boxes as homes and they often lay eggs on such boxes.

The Importance of the Boxes

The importance of the boxes is that most wood ducks and other duck species usually make it their home. Yes, duck females typically live in wetlands and in wooden boxes. Because of their constant migration, they require homes in various places. When a prospective wooden box is found, the wood duck will often inspect the box and check its contents. Wood ducks often pick their boxes according to their size and shape. Of course, they will also pick a home which is away from any predators. Once they have selected a suitable box for them they will often lay eggs there. The eggs will hatch and then they will then migrate to another location. Basically, a duck box is effective increasing the population of both wooden ducks and other species.

Picking the Right Location for a box

In order to pick the right location for a box, several factors should be strictly considered. One of which is that the box should be away from any known predator which might endanger the tenants of the box. Therefore, the box should have wooden posts and several metal cables in order to prevent any predators from eating the birds. The box should also be found near a suitable habitat and it should not be very far. Usually, wild ducks prefer homes which are a hundred yards away from their habitat. The reason for which is that they require the fertile wetlands for food and for looking for a partner. The shallow wetlands allow them to look for insects and small fishes which in turn becomes their meal.

Using the right materials

Another important factor when making a duck box is to choose the right wood for the job. The ideal type of wood is the rough cut and unfinished lumber since the ducklings have the sharp claws to create an exit hole. Metal or plastic boxes are not ideal since they might impede the ducklings from exiting the structure. At least a couple of wood shavings should also be inserted on the box so that the ducks will have a nest. Once the females see the wood shavings, they will usually use it in order to incubate their eggs. After the winter season, the boxes should have a new batch of wood shavings since the old batch will be damaged by the harsh weather brought about by the winter cold.

Feeding Birds – What Type of Feeder Should You Use?

Wild birds are surely capable of feeding themselves off the land. However, when weather extremes make things tougher for them, having an additional source of food or water can be a life saver.

You may see flocks of red-winged blackbirds descend on your backyard seed feeder before they leave their northern range. Feeders can help prepare wild birds for their long journey of migration. You may live on the southwest coast of North America and see Anna’s Hummingbirds at your nectar feeder in the winter. Wherever you live, your wild birds can certainly use a helping hand from time to time throughout the year.

Wild birds will come to feed at many different types of feeders depending on the type of feeder they prefer. Some birds prefer most to forage from the ground or platform feeders, as do cardinals. Others as this male house finch will feed from the ground, platform feeders, tube feeders, and seed feeders readily all as one. Others still, like the goldfinch prefer thistle seed from open fields or from tube feeders.

Platform feeders will attract Chipping Sparrows, Cardinals, American Tree Sparrows, Towhees, Rose-Breasted Grosbeak, Blue Grosbeak, Song Sparrows, White-Throated Sparrows, Meadowlarks, Evening Grosbeak, Blue Jays, Magpies, Steller’s Jays, Yellow-Bellied Sapsuckers, Downy Woodpeckers, Mourning Doves, Black-Capped Chickadee, Gray Catbirds, Eastern Bluebirds, Pine Grosbeak, Northern Mockingbirds, and others.

Platform feeders can be as simple as a piece of wood on your picnic table, or your picnic table itself. However, that can be quite messy. Another option would be to get a 4×4 post and nail a wood plank sized 12 x 12 or larger to the top of the post. Drill holes through the wood plank so that water does not just sit as a puddle. To prevent most of the food pieces from just falling off to the ground, you may take some thin wood trimming and nail it to the border of the wood plank. Nailing the wood trim to surround the border of the wood plank will help keep most of the nuts, fruit, suet, or bread from just falling off. Although, having some of the scraps fall to the ground is good, as this will also attract other birds that will like to forage on the ground most often.

Suet Feeders attract: Blue Jays, Yellow-Bellied Sapsuckers, Downy Woodpeckers, Hairy Woodpeckers, Northern Flickers, Black-Capped Chickadee, Tufted Titmouse, Nuthatch, Eastern Bluebirds, Northern Mockingbirds, Brown Creepers, Gray Catbirds, Wrens, Steller’s Jays, and more.

A suet feeder is typically made of wire mesh, and easily hung from a tree branch, hanger, or pole.

Fruit feeders/ Fruit & Jelly Feeders attract Orioles, Western Tanagers, Scarlet Tanagers, and Rose-Breasted Grosbeak.

Fruit feeders will typically utilize cups for jelly as in the feeder above, with side pins for sticking orange halves.

Peanut Feeders attract: Indigo Bunting, Blue Jays, Woodpeckers, Nuthatch, Eastern Bluebirds, and others.

Hummingbird or Sugar Water Feeders attract more than Hummingbirds. They also will attract Bullock’s Orioles, Baltimore Orioles, Western Tanagers, and House Finch among others.

Seed Feeders attract: Painted Bunting, Purple Finch, American Goldfinch, Pine Siskin, Grosbeak, House Sparrows, Juncos, Common Redpoll, Red Crossbill, Tree Sparrows, and many more.

Caring for Chubby Frogs (Asian Painted Frogs)

About Chubby Frogs:

The Chubby Frog got its nickname because of its plump, round body. It is also called the Asian Painted Frog because of its origin and the fact that it has two stripes on its back that are outlined in black or dark brown, giving it a “painted” appearance. The frog’s scientific name is Kaloula pulchra. All the Kaloula pulchra frogs in the pet trade are wild-caught from their various natural habitats which include leafy forests, rice fields, and even small towns. During the daytime hours, these frogs stay hidden underneath leaves and debris. They emerge for feeding in the evening.

Choosing a Frog:

Make sure you pick a healthy Chubby Frog at the pet store. For one, make sure the frog is actually chubby! Its body should be full and round. If the frog is underweight, you’ll see bones sticking out. Examine the eyes for clarity, and the skin for open wounds or abrasions. If you go to the pet shop during the day, the frog should be hiding. If you find it out in the open, that could be a sign of illness. Of course, it could also mean that somebody else was recently examining it. Be sure to ask the pet store owner if someone was recently handling the frog. Unless the frog is disturbed or ill, it will remain hidden during the day.

Chubby Frog Housing:

A 10- to 15-gallon enclosure will give your frog the amount of room that it needs. If you’d like to house 2 frogs, a 20-gallon tank is recommended. Be sure to use a terrarium with a tight, screen lid secure enough to prevent escapes. These frogs are great climbers!

The bottom of the enclosure needs to be layered with substrate, at least 2″ deep for burrowing. Steer clear of gravel, wood chips, sand, and vermiculite or perlite. The best substrates for your Chubby include peat moss / potting soil mixes, eco earth, organic mulch, and coconut fiber.

Furnish the terrarium with potted plants, driftwood, and other items that the frog can use for hiding or climbing. To prevent the frog from uprooting plants while burrowing, you may wish to keep live plants planted in pots rather than directly in the substrate.

Your frog will prefer the temperature to be between 70 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. Use a heat lamp or under-tank heater to maintain the temperature. Aim for about 80 degrees F. during the day, and no cooler than 70 degrees F. at night.

A few times per week, mist the inside of the tank with water. Humidity is important for your frog. The water MUST be 100% chlorine-FREE!

NOTE: Day / Night Difference – Your frog needs to be able to tell day from night. For this reason, an under-tank heater may be better than a heat lamp. That way, you can maintain the temperature at night without having the bright light on in the frog’s face. Also, you should keep the frog’s terrarium in a location where it can naturally experience light during the day and dark at night. Try to keep it in a room that will not have lights turned on often at night.

Fish Tank Heater Guide

The temperature of the fish tank is absolutely critical for the well-being of the species of fish inhabiting it. Unlike human beings and warm-blooded pets, species of fish tend to not generate their unique physique heat. They must rely on the temperature of the water to regulate their internal temperature. The aquarium water heater information below covers everything you need to understand regarding heating units, and will cover types of fish tank heaters, sizes, and placement of the heater.

Deciding on the type of fish tank heater to use with your aquarium tank isn’t really difficult as long as you recognize the variances between a number of fish tank heaters. There are a number of basic aquarium tank heating units; immersible heating units, submersible heating units, substrate heating units, and filtration system heating units. Depending on the size of your tank and additional components such as a sump, you may have to decide what will work best for your aquarium.

Figuring out which kind of water heater to acquire for your aquarium tank is just the main picture. Heaters occur in several sizes and power ratings. Are you still undecided as to what exact size water heater you need for your aquarium tank? There exists a way to analyze the proper sizing water heater, using the size of your tank and desired temperature. Once you know what size heater you need and the type of heater, you are ready to select the brand. Please read reviews online or on the fish tank heater site at the end of the article to see what heaters are worth buying.

Numerous species of fish that want warmed-up water for ideal health and fitness (such as the Betta) are held in small tanks or containers. Regrettably, mini tanks and smaller types of fish tanks could be a difficult task to heat adequately. In past times, a couple of years maybe, a range of small heating units were introduced towards the aquarium tank market place. Have a look at these types heating units specifically made for mini aquariums if you own a tank less than 10 gallons in volume. They are typically marketed as “nano” or “pico” heaters, and get the job done fairly well without the risk of over-heating the tank with a full sized fish tank heater.

Once you purchase a fish tank heater, the next step is deciding where to place it in the tank. Should the item become located in the middle or off to a side? Can you route the current more efficiently? Will it possibly make a difference? There are many simple, although crucial, tips for proper water heater placement. A little trial and error also goes a long way. You may want to invest in a thermometer probe to accurately monitor the aquarium temperature.

Even under great conditions, issues can certainly occur. Essentially the most frequent undesired event is usually a water heater that decides to break without warning. In the event that you are worried about this happening, you must think of utilizing a water heater safeguard. You’ll want to have it when you need it. You might as well throw it in the cart when you buy the heater.

Another difficult fish tank heater task is usually through the summer time whenever aquarium tank water temperatures increase along with ambient temperature. At times, turning off the fish tank heater isn’t really ample to stop hazardously excessive water temperatures, and extra measures are needed and keep the species of fish cool. One can add cups of cold water, but that is quite time consuming. Chillers exist and are essentially the opposite of the heater. If you’re roughly in the middle hemisphere, you might as well throw a chiller in the cart with your fish tank heater and heater safeguard.

From the wintertime, the opposite issue can occur. This is especially true should your water heater not be able to provide enough heat during the winter time of the year, and measures should be taken in order to keep the species of fish warm. Either a stronger heater, or ideally a second heater should be considered as well. Two heaters will ensure the tank doesn’t get too out of line should one fail. Even if your 300-Watt heater is twice as strong as a 150-Watt heater, should it decide not to turn on then it becomes a 0-Watt heater. Might as well throw a second heater in the cart.

Hopefully after reading this you will have a better idea of what type of fish tank heater to purchase. Once you have an ideal system in place, you won’t have to worry because you know the aquarium temperature will be constant and if something were to fail there are safeguards in place to prevent disaster.