Feeding Birds is Fun!
Feeding birds is fun! There’s nothing quite like the feeling of spotting a new or rare bird, perched at the feeder. Bird feeding also helps sustain our feathered friends when snow and ice may make foraging impossible. If you are a novice to bird feeding, you may want to get a book, such as A Field Guide to the Birds by Roger Tory Petersen to help identify the different birds in your yard.
Ground-feeding birds like cardinals, blackbirds and mourning doves will find more seed beneath feeders if you stamp down any snow that accumulates.
Suet can become rancid in warmer climates. To protect against this, you can heat the suet in a pan till it is liquid, then allow it to cool. Pour it into muffin tins, or in an old cardboard orange-juice can to cool—then you can pop out the muffin-shaped cakes or peal the juice can when the suet becomes solid. You may want to melt the suet outdoors, because heating it causes an odor which can linger in your house.
Keep feeders free from diseases by washing regularly, especially in warmer weather. Use a mild solution of soap and bleach, about 1 ounce of bleach to 1 gallon of water. Be sure to rinse well, and dry the feeder before filling with seed.
See the chart below for tips on which types of feed are best liked by the feathered friends in your area!
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