If you enjoy watching the birds that come to your feeders, you may want to consider providing something else they need to survive: water. Most birds love easy access to a clean water supply. Before you improve your backyard oasis, make sure your water feature is avian friendly.

Movement: Birds are drawn to moving water and you can choose from several products on the market designed to work with bird baths: misters, agitators, water wigglers and fountain-like drippers.
Puddle deep: For bathing and drinking, a center depth of about two inches is sufficient for most birds as they simply use the water to splash in.

Good footing: A sloped entrance and sand in the bottom of the basin will help the birds keep their footing. Offer a place to stand in the middle of the basin, such as a rock or small branch. This is especially helpful in the winter as they dip down to get a drink.

Location, location, location: Place the birdbath where you'll have a good view of the birds but also consider the birds' safety when choosing a location. Birds are more vulnerable to predators when bathing, and they don’t fly as well while wet. Placing the birdbath near trees and shrubs where they can easily escape will help them feel safe. As a bonus, any shading from the plants will slow water evaporation.

Cleanliness: You'll also want to choose a style that is easy to clean. Check the water level every few days. You may be surprised by the rate of evaporation, especially during the hot summer months. Replace the water as needed. Be sure to remove debris and scrape up green algae that collects on the bottom.

Along with the fresh water, choose hand-crafted bird food mixes for your feeders made with the highest-quality seeds and nuts, and birds will be flocking to your yard.

Two robins in a birdbath. Thinkstock