Tag Archives: bird feeding

Feeding Birds Through the Years

The other day my knee hurt.  Today my ankle hurts.  My back hurts as well.

One day, some time in the future I will be too ill and old to put bird food out.

Different generations of birds will keep on coming to my bird feeders – if there is bird food there.

I have seen two young birds on a fence near the bird table.  I suppose next year those same ‘fledglings’ will be brining their young to my bird tables.  And so it will go on.

I’m writing this sitting at a window that looks onto one of the bird tables.

Whoever lives here after me won’t continue my daily routine of bird feeding and putting out a variety of food such as peanut granules, black sunflower seed, grated cheese, sliced apple, bird food mixes etc.

So one day this will come to an end.  What will my feathered friends do then?

Fly off to the next birdtable I expect!

They will survive and that’s all ther matters.

The up and downs of bird feeding

I was bird feeding early this morning.

It is a strange feeling knowing that birds are watching you when you step into the garden.  I know this because one lone starling starts to chitter and in a minute there are a small flock flying over my head.  Other birds appear on the fence looking at me.

A blackbird sweeps past the ground feeder – but there isn’t any food on it yet.

I put out the different bird food into the different feeders, put the grated cheese and the bread out as well.  I could hear the birds singing happily away in the hedgerows.

It is a lovely morning.  The colours of the countryside blend into the blue of the sky.

Then the squirrels and rooks appeared.

The squirrel soon disappeared, but the rooks just swarmed near the ground feeders and ate nearly all the food that was there.  They are such big birds.  They don’t belong in the garden at my feeders.  It’s a good job I put a lot of it inside ground caged feeders.

I’ll put some photos on of my home made and bought caged feeders – but that will be later in the week.

Have a good day

Bird Feeding Tip

Keeping the bird food inside bird feeders dry when it is raining is difficult

Driving rain can seep into the feeding holes in the hanging bird feeders and clogg up the bird seed. 

This makes it difficult for birds to get at the seed just at a time when they need to get energy quickly.

It’s a messy job trying to get the wet bird food from inside the bird feeders and clean the feeder. 

  • I don’t put out all my hanging feeders.
  • I always keep one hanging feeder as a spare.  I keep it dry and clean

This means when I bring in the rain lashed, wet bird feeders I don’t have to try and unclog the wet feed from inside the feeder straigh away.  When the hanging feeders have been cleaned I can leave them to dry naturally.  This really helps me when I’m short of time.

Keeping a spary, dry, clean bird feeder means there will always be bird food when the birds need it most.

This Bird Feeding Tip is just a basic, simple way to make sure our garden birds have a supply of dry, clean food at a time when rain and cold weather can make survival difficult for them.

Sunflower Seeds for Birds

Sunflower seeds are a really popular bird food for my garden birds which is a good thing as sunflower seeds give INSTANT ENERGY to  garden birds because they have –

  • A high oil content
  • A high fat content

INSTANT ENERGY is important when feeding birds in winter as the cold dark nights and short days mean less time for our feathered freinds to eat enough bird food to survive

 BLACK SUNFLOWER SEEDS

Black sunflower seeds

Black sunflower seeds

Black sunflower seeds are high in

  • Vitamin E
  • Boitin
  • Choline
  • Thiamin
  • Zinc

The black sunflower seeds can be put on the bird table all year round and help a lot of garden birds survive.

Sunflower seeds can be bought as a single seed selection or as part of a bird food mix.  Some seed mixes attract

  • chaffinches
  • house sparrows
  • tree sparrows
  • greenfinches
  • blue tits
  • great tits

Indeed almost any bird that visits the bird table or bird feeder will eat black sunflower seeds – I know I’ve seen them.

Here’s a bird I often see at my bird table

chaffinch

So sunflower seeds are a good all round feed for year long use.

How to feed:

  • Tubular hanging bird seed feeder
  • Bird table

Sunflower seeds are a popular meal for garden  birds and they’ll be popular with you as well when you see the variety of birds that will visit your garden to feed on them.

Bird Feeding Tips

If you are just starting out bird feeding this information may help you as there are a wide selection of bird seed mixes available to chose from.
Look for mixes with flaked maize, sunflower seeds and peanut granuals.  (Blackbirds love flaked maize) 
You can also buy individual types of bird food –

Whole Peanuts and Peanut Granules
Peanuts are rich in fat and enjoyed by all the tit family, greenfinches, house sparrows, nuthatches, great spotted woodpeckers and siskins. 

  • Whole Peanuts It is best to feed whole peanuts a peanut feeder.  Whole peanuts can be put on the birdtable in winter.  Whole peanuts can harm a young fledgling bird so do not feed in Spring and Summer.
  • Crushed Peanut Granules attract robins, dunnocks and even wrens and can safely be put on a bird table.  Crushed peanuts are a favourite on my birdtable  and I know they give an extra energy boost.  For this reason they are a good all round bird food. 

 

Millet

millet for birds

millet for birds

Sparrows, finches and collared doves love millet.  Sparrows can turn the millet to energy very quickly.
It also means that as well as getting millett the sparrows and other birds are getting some fat in the bird food as well

The problem I have with millett is that it is so easily blown away by the wind.  I have solved this problem by melting some lard and pouring that over the millet.  It does not turn it into a fatball, but just coats it and clogs it together a little bit.

Nyger seeds
nyjer seed and black sunflower seeds
 
Nyger Seeds are small and black.  They have a large oil content and are a favourite with goldfinches and siskins. 
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Seed Mixes what to avoid
Avoid seed mixes that split pea beans, dried rice or lentils.  Only the larger birds can eat these, so it’s not worth buying them.
Whatever you do have fun and enjoy bringing birds to your garden.

One of  the most important parts of bird feeding is taking the time to sit and watch them.  In summer sitting in the garden and seeing and hearing them among the hedge is a lovely way to relax.  In winter looking through the window at a  strategically placed bird feeder is a good way to see what type of birds are visiting.

Enjoy bringing birds to your garden.

  

Bird feeding Tip

Keeping the bird food inside bird feeders dry when it’s raining is difficult . 

Driving rain can seep into the feeding holes in the bird feeders and clogg up the bird seed.  This makes  it difficult for birds to get at the seed just at a time when they need to get energy quickly.

It’s a messy job trying to get the wet bird food from inside the bird feeders .
I don’t put out all my hanging feeders.  I always keep one hanging feeder as a spare. I also have a very old feeder that I sometimes use as a spare feeder.  I keep them both dry and clean.

This means that when I bring the rain lashed, wet bird feeders in I know I don’t have to try and unclog the wet feed from inside straight away and when they have been cleaned I can leave them to dry naturally.  This really helps me when I’m short of time