Which Colors Attract Birds To A Bird Bath? And Which Don’t

It’s the middle of summer and if there’s one thing most people associate with summer more than anything else it’s swimming! As people we love to cool off during the hot months by taking a dip in nice cool water, and many animals are the same way. Because of this, one of the most effective ways to attract birds to your backyard is by putting out a bird bath for them to relax in.

When buying a bird bath, however, many people forget to consider one important thing: the color. Hunters wear camoflauge to hide from deer, people wear white and tan colors in summer to be less appealing to mosquitoes, but which colors are best for attracting birds? In this post we’ll go over some of the best colors, and a few other factors, to help you choose a perfect bird bath for your yard.

While there are many different colors that are appealing to birds, when choosing your bird bath it’s important to keep at least the main body of it a neutral or earthy tone. A large body of color that is too bright and flashy can look like a predator or other danger to the birds and they’ll steer clear of your bird bath. By using a muted tone, you can make sure you don’t scare the birds off. You’ll still want to include something with highlights of a bright color or other bright colors nearby to catch the birds’ interest.

The best bright colors to attract most common backyard birds are bright oranges, yellows, and blues. Many of the flowers and foods that birds love come in bright hues. Using accent colors and other decorations in orange, yellow, and blue can help draw them to your bird bath.

If you really want to step it up a notch you can just plant the flowers birds like around your bird bath. The best way to get birds to come to your bird bath is always to make the environment around the bird bath a friendly place for them.

Shapes and patterns

Not only can birds be drawn to certain colors, but different shapes and patterns can also be attractive to them. There are two ways to do this: using shapes and patterns that mimic food and using shapes and patterns that provide good camouflage for the birds.

Using fabrics or planters with flower patterns can help make the location look more appealing to birds. When they come and find the real flowers you’ve planted near the bird bath they’ll be there to stay.

A different strategy is to use fabrics and decorations in the same color or pattern as the birds you’re hoping to attract. This will help birds camouflage and feel safer from predators.

Colors that scare birds away

Even more important than paying attention to colors that attract birds is making sure to avoid things that’ll scare birds away. Birds will keep their distance from your birdbath if there’s anything too bright white or reflective. Things that are shiny or white are intimidating to birds.

Just like humans, they don’t want to take a dip in the water if they don’t feel safe. Flashy metal or anything made of aluminum is usually the major cause of this. Try to replace metal decorations and other outdoor fixtures with wood or stone ones whenever possible to lessen the intimidation factor and make birds and other animals feel more comfortable there.

Other things that attract birds to a bird bath

Some of the other things that attract birds to a bird bath include flowers, brush piles, thorny bushes, and obviously food. The best flowers that birds like are sunflowers, daisies, asters, and marigolds. As you probably know, birds love to eat sunflower seeds. This combined with the bright yellow color makes sunflowers an ideal flower to draw birds to your yard.

Brush piles are appealing to birds because they give them a good place to hide and also bring worms and other bugs for birds to feast on. Thorny bushes, especially huckleberry and other berry bushes, provide a good place for birds to set up a nest guarded from predators and can also provide a good source of food.

Birds love food and will eat almost anything they can find, so putting up a bird feeder or bird house is a great way to attract them as well. A lone bird bath with nothing else appealing around it won’t be particularly attractive to the birds, so make sure you’re working to create an altogether fun location.

What colors do hummingbirds like?

These tips will all work well when seeking to attract most birds, but hummingbirds are a unique case with different preferences than most other birds. If you’re looking to bring hummingbirds to your yard, your best bet is to do the opposite of usual and buy a bird bath in a bright color.

For hummingbirds, bright colors actually signify food because the sweet nectar that hummingbirds love to eat is typically a bright red, pink or yellow. Many companies also sell bird baths specifically made for hummingbirds that include a dish for you to leave nectar out for them. This lets them bathe and have a meal at the same place.


Color might not be the most important thing affecting which birds you draw to your yard, but it’s definitely a major factor. Take some thought about which colors attract birds to a bird bath. When you buy a new bird bath, consider getting rid of shiny things outside scaring birds away, or simply plant some more flowers. Whichever way, it’s sure to make your backyard a more pleasant place for birds and hummingbirds, and for you as well.

One final tip is to pick a bird bath with a small fountain in it or nearby, as the sound of moving water and bubbles is sure to draw even more birds to your yard. I hope you enjoy your newly bird-filled backyard paradise.