On a recent hike, I came across this contraption. What I liked most about it was its name – Game Bird Guzzler. It’s basically a device for providing a source of water for game birds. The way it works is that when rain hits the roof of this structure, it’s collected in a gutter and piped into the back into the tank. This water is then fed, through the white pipe, into the small basin at the front. There’s a flap in the basin so that when a game bird such as a turkey takes a drink, its head will push the flap and release more water into the basin.
When I was there, I didn’t see any turkeys or other game birds, but my approach prompted great activity and squawking as a good number of assorted finches and African silverbills took to the surrounding trees. They sat there, refusing to return to the water but not leaving either. The area surrounding the guzzler was alive with bird calls in an area otherwise not noticeably populated.
Eventually I gave up waiting for a bird to take a drink and moved on. No doubt, within a few minutes the guzzler was again crowded with small birds.