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Pedestal Birdbaths

pedestal birdbath

We have the Victorians to thank for these pretty additions to the garden, and they are wonderful for bringing the birds up to a level where we can easily observe them. Larger birds like jays and robins love their ample size, and have a wonderful time thrashing about as if their goal is to completely empty them with just one bath!


Caution is necessary, however, as many of these baths on the market today are much too deep for most birds. Since the depth of the water in any bath should be no more than 2 inches, with one inch being the ideal, you may have to add some flat rocks to make them safer. As a matter of fact, rocks make almost any bath more attractive to all birds since they not only give birds something to perch on but also offer a way for them to gauge the depth of the water before they jump in, just as we check to make sure we’re at the deep end of the pool before we dive in headfirst. Just remember that nature rarely offers water to the birds “on a pedestal,” so you may want to add a ground level bath to attract more species.


Material of construction

Pedestal baths are available in a wide range of materials. These are some of the typical options:

– Cement – molded cement or similar. Can be very attractive. Heavy. Subject to damage from freezing.

– Plastic and molded resins. Can be very attractive. Resistant to freeze damage. Can be lightweight and top heavy. May need added weight at the base or stakes to maintain stability.

– Metal. Most are copper or brass. Often very attractive. Can be expensive. May be subject to freeze damage, depending on design. Copper units may develop a patina over time, changing from the copper color to a greenish color.

About the Author

Sam Crowe

Sam is the founder of He has been birding for over 30 years and has a world list of over 2000 species. He has served as treasurer of the Texas Ornithological Society, Sanctuary Chair of Dallas Audubon, Editor of the Cornell Lab of Ornithology's "All About Birds" web site and as a contributing editor for Birding Business magazine. Many of his photographs and videos can be found on the site.

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