There are many ways to attract wild birds to the garden and one of the most common and popular is the bird table. These come in a wide range of designs and sizes but all serve the same basic function, providing a convenient platform from which to feed wild birds.
They generally consist of a flat horizontal feeding platform either open or roofed, mounted in a variety of ways, on short legs on the ground, by chains from a branch or bracket or on a post at height from the ground.
Ground tables will attract Blackbirds, Thrushes, Sparrows and Robins, open tables will appeal to larger birds such as doves and pigeons whilst roofed versions will give protection to smaller feeding birds, such as tits and sparrows, from aerial predators and help keep food dry.
The platform element of the bird table generally follows the same basic design, that of a flat feeding surface, usually of wood, plastic or fine mesh, with raised edges to prevent food blowing away with gaps to allow for drainage and easy cleaning. Roofs can be simple or complex depending on the size and shape of the table but typically consist of a peaked roof, usually covered with bitumen felt, connected to the feeding platform by 2 or more posts.