Here at Mocking Bird Hill we are not only delighted that we can offer an open-air sculpture park within our 7 acres of lush tropical gardens, but also that we have spared no effort in making it wonderfully bird friendly.
As you sit on a lounger, view the sculptures or just walk along the trails, the presence of bird song fills the fragranced air and the brightly coloured flashes from the birds tropical plumage brighten an already vivacious garden.
Most gardeners will choose plants for their aesthetic qualities or the way they smell. Changing our plantings encourage some birds to feel more at home, and honor us by making their permanent home here. Natural insect control is just one of the benefits that turning you garden into a small-scale bird friendly nature reserve can bring.
We don’t use herbicides and pesticides, which can be ingested by birds as they feed on insects & plants. Neither do we use rodenticides which harm birds of prey when they feed on animals that have ingested the poison in bait.
We have tried to create a multi-layered canopy of plants, trees, vines and shrubs that offer a complete package of food, shelter and nesting sites for the different species of birds that prefer different environments. Some prefer living on or close to the ground, others prefer life high in treetops. We have tried to create different habitats for the particular birds that visit us: a hummingbird garden, a migratory bird stopover, a woodland bird retreat, and a small wetland bird habitat.
We have learnt from birdwatchers that after storms it was best to leave the dried twigs, weeds or grass clippings etc. rather than clearing everything as it provides a good habitat for shelter, nesting and breeding. Sometimes this can look ‘untidy’, but dead or dying trees are nutritional goldmines for birds, that provide an environment for beneficial fungi as well as tunnelling insects and grubs that hide beneath the bark. Whilst we deadhead flowers in summer to keep plants blooming longer, once Autumn arrives we leave the flower-heads to mature in order to produce seeds and food for the birds that visit us.
We’re sure you will enjoy the visits by all the different varieties of hummingbirds that our nectar filled brightly coloured garden attracts. They particularly enjoy Bottlebrush, Willows and Eucalyptus for nesting and weave into these lichen, spiders webs and moss to build their tiny nests. Great places to watch is in our pomegranate tree, its brightly orange blossoms providing a feast for them in addition to the otaheiti apple blooms and the various coconut and palms trees types.
We suggest treating yourself to a pair of binoculars, a tall cool drink and one of our ever-cosy hammocks and just relaxing whilst you watch your new feathered friends at work.