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<a href='http://cbegeman.blogspot.com/' target='_blank'>Christian Begeman</a> found orioles at the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, but you might see them in your own back yard.
Christian Begeman found orioles at the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, but you might see them in your own back yard.
<a href='http://cbegeman.blogspot.com/' target='_blank'>Christian Begeman</a> found orioles at the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, but you might see them in your own back yard.
Christian Begeman found orioles at the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, but you might see them in your own back yard.
<a href='http://cbegeman.blogspot.com/' target='_blank'>Christian Begeman</a> found orioles at the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, but you might see them in your own back yard.
Christian Begeman found orioles at the Adams Homestead and Nature Preserve, but you might see them in your own back yard.
K.C. Jensen found this Baltimore oriole and rose-breasted grosbeak on his feeder near Volga.
K.C. Jensen found this Baltimore oriole and rose-breasted grosbeak on his feeder near Volga.

Enticing the Oriole

May 10, 2012

Now is a great time for birding in South Dakota – it’s the peak of spring migration. Baltimore orioles are a favorite for backyard birders in Yankton. I know many people who put out jelly to attract them. The couple we bought our house from had great luck simply spooning the grape variety onto small plates in the yard.

Ruth Steil, administrative assistant at the magazine, says orioles started coming to her yard just last week. She and her husband, Mark, keep a large stash of jelly just for the birds. “One time our kids came home to visit and found all the jars,” says Ruth. “They wondered what in the world we were doing with all that jelly.”  

Ruth and Mark have a special feeder with two nails to hold orange wedges and two small cups for the birds’ favorite treat. And don’t think you can skimp on quality. “A friend of mine bought a whole bunch of grape jelly at the dollar store and they wouldn’t touch it,” Steil says. “I think it’s because it didn’t have as much real fruit juice.” Ruth recommends Welch's.

If you're wondering what other birds you might attract to your yard, South Dakota Game, Fish, & Parks department has a free booklet. Backyard Birds of South Dakota has color photos and descriptions of nearly 80 species you may find. You can contact SDGF&P to request a copy.

Terry Sohl’s web site, sdakotabirds.com, also has a great checklist showing what seasons birds can be expected and how common they are. You can also check out Terry's table showing favorite foods of common birds.

I plan to put out some jelly tonight to see what I can attract. Hopefully I’m not too late. What are your tricks for attracting birds?

Comments

07:44 am - Fri, May 11 2012
Laura said:
I never knew orioles stopped through here until I visited some river-dwelling friends of mine. They had orange slices and jelly blobs out on their patio, and I wondered what the heck they were up to. Oh. Birds.

It's neat seeing what shows up in one's backyard when you have the right lure.
08:04 am - Fri, May 11 2012
John Andrews said:
My parents had orioles at their feeder in Lake Norden last weekend.They also use grape jelly and sometimes orange wedges. The talk of the town was that someone spotted a cardinal in one of the trees. They are more rare up there than in Yankton.
09:05 am - Fri, May 11 2012
Heidi said:
On a similar topic, my parents have problems with giant black birds poop bombing their back patio. So, Dad went to the local hardware store and bought one of those predator call machines. Every 15 minutes it would let out the most horrible series of sounds. The black birds could have cared less, but we sure got a kick out of it. Any tips on how to keep them away?
09:16 am - Fri, May 11 2012
Bernie said:
We've got more cardinals than ever. Maybe they find the cutworm moths tasty?
09:36 am - Fri, May 11 2012
Rebecca said:
Heidi - my in-laws have the same problem with birds pooping in their pool! I honestly don't know how to get rid of them, though.

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