Bill Day — Bringing Native Birds to You Up Close & Personal

Last Updated 3/23/2023In We Are Statesville

Article by Kristie Darling

Some people are best known for the company they keep. In the instance of Bill Day, that’s an understatement. Some of Bill’s best friends are birds…you know, backyard birds…just like you have flitting around your house. You, too, are likely to enjoy the beauty and company of birds…they’re fun to watch all year ‘round.

Bill has taken that interest to a loftier level than most, and the high-tech way he shares his love of birds and their natural world is a thing to behold. A very easy thing to behold at his YouTube channel, Just Bill here.


Maya Angelou once said, “A bird does not sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song.” Bill’s love of birds stems from his late mother’s love of birds. “She LOVED birds,” he shared. “I watched her watch birds, and it made me happy, too. I’ve been seriously watching birds for about ten years, and when I was looking for something outside of my work to get into…something I was passionate about…something I could share, well, wild birds just seemed perfect for me. I looked into several birding video ideas and live-streaming backyard bird watching surfaced. I was already feeding the birds in my back yard. I live in a wooded sub-division on the east side of Statesville, and adding live-streaming and sharing it with folks around here sounded like something I could do. Streaming 24/7 seemed right. I went to school on YouTube (that’s how I learn to fix everything) and built a feeder, wired up a camera, and started figuring out how to make all this work and be fun along the way.”


Bill’s bird feeder is like a lawn sculpture with its unique, natural design. About six feet high, with a 2’ x 5’ feeding and watering platform, it’s crafted from reclaimed posts, 2x4s, and downed branches. There are several bird-friendly features that keep about 25 different species coming back for more, day in and day out. Suet cages and two small feeding stations hang at the west side, several bright red hummingbird feeders adorn the north side, his surveillance camera is mounted on a four-foot-long sturdy arm and points back on the entire set-up on the east side, and Bill’s access for re-filling and cleaning is south side. A water fountain gurgles daily. Hand-crafted squirrel baffles do a good job beneath the stand.

By logging into Just Bill, his YouTube channel, you will enjoy a literal birds-eye view of blackbirds, bluebirds, blue jays, cardinals, chickadees, cowbirds, doves, finches, mockingbirds, nuthatches, robins, sparrows, titmouse, thrashers, thrush, towhees, warblers, woodpeckers, wrens…wow! In springtime, the scene is a colorful frenzy of feeding, fluffing, and flying in a beautiful garden setting in Bill’s little neighborhood in Statesville…who knew? At night, things quiet down and the scene goes black and white, and occasionally, birds will show up in the dark. And in August, the evening serenade of frogs entertains. This is in Bill’s backyard, so you’ll sometimes see him mowing the yard or working in the garden. In the background, Bill’s new wildflower meadow should start taking shape soon, so stay tuned for more feathered friends flitting about.

“I’ve discovered that a menu of meal worms for the bluebirds, suet for woodpeckers, and black oil sunflower seeds and peanuts for everyone else works pretty good. The most common birds we see are cardinals and a variety of finches. We see yellow-rumped warblers, but they’re unusual…they like to eat jelly that I serve up in a bowl made of clementine peels. Red-bellied woodpeckers will show up for suet and peanuts.”


Bill started streaming Just Bill on January 8, 2023. His live-streaming backyard camera not only provides a window into the native birds of the Southeastern United States, but it also provides an educational tool for schools, researchers, and the public here in Statesville and around the world. Bill’s YouTube channel has a link at the BBC Discover Wildlife website,, where folks worldwide can find an access point to the most popular live animal videos streaming from around the planet. Bill’s birds are enjoyed around the globe there every day.

“My friend Parks Collins uses my YouTube channel with his students at Mitchell Community College for research in his biology classes,” Bill said of one of his loyal, local supporters. Parks is known around Statesville, along with Bill, as a guide for MCC’s Project Yellowstone trip that, “aims to make science relevant and allow students the chance to be scientists and stimulate conservation through appreciation.”  The annual excursion out West was created in 2008 at Statesville High School. Parks and Bill continue to organize and lead the trip, and as one participant said, they did “…a fantastic job with great joy and professionalism.” Expanded 12 years ago to include Mitchell students and interested local Statesville nature-lovers, the program mixes generations on the field trip. Everyone gets a full immersion experience with experts who live to share the love of nature. Project Yellowstone is now offered as a continuing ed class at Mitchell.

Along with Mitchell college students, first graders at American Renaissance School have been using the live stream to study birds in their classroom.


“We currently have about 1,000 subscribers to Just Bill—a lot of seniors—from around the country and the world, and we’re growing fast. Folks who live in places where there’s still snow on the ground watch us all the time because they miss their own birds in winter,” Bill said. “I think my mom would have liked it. “We usually have about 30 to 40 or so watchers at a time, from as far away as The Philippines, Germany and the UK, San Diego, New Orleans, New Jersey…we have fans everywhere. And our moderators are amazing bird lovers and bird experts. They answer questions and identify birds. They keep the chat going and keep it all about birds. I trust them to know what’s going on with these birds…I’ll check in with them on the chat on weekends, sitting by the pool with coffee…I’m learning something new about birds every day.”

If you have questions about the birds you’ve seen around Statesville, this is the place to check out. Please subscribe, it helps Bill build his channel. Donations are gladly accepted to help feed his birds and keep things flying at Just Bill's YouTube Channel.

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