During these colder months it's more important than ever that we look after the wild birds in our garden. As the temperature drops and natural food is less available providing birds with extra food and safe shelter can really help a bird to survive. Birds are different from other animals, most animals will fatten themselves up during the warmer months to provide them with nutrition for the colder months. Birds however don't, they live from one day to the next eating the food needed to nourish them that day.
Natural food becomes unavailable throughout the winter season due to the cold and often freezing conditions. Sub-zero temperatures freeze the ground and water sources which birds rely on. Birds also use a lot of vital energy with every activity, including flying, and this is energy that they also need to keep warm.
There are so many reasons that it's crucial to feed your garden birds through the winter months and it's important to know which food is best. We've put together a little guide below of the different bird feeds on offer:
Suitable seeds and grains (like nyjer, millet, oats, and sunflower seeds).
Only feed peanuts if they're unsalted, fresh and sold for human consumption or by a reputable feed shop. To protect chicks from being fed whole nuts and choking, provide peanuts in good quality mesh feeders.
Cooked pasta or rice, boiled potatoes, cheese, uncooked and unsalted bacon rind, raisins and sultanas.
Net-free fat or suet balls attract a wide range of species and provide a great boost of calories.
Apples, pears and soft fruits are popular and are a great autumn food.
Insects such as mealworms or waxworms.
Be careful! Grapes, sultanas, raisins and some artificial sweeteners are toxic to dogs.
Here at Deepdale Garden Centre we stock a great variety of bird feeds as well as bird tables, feeders and accessories. Our most popular bird feeds come in our refillable tubs, purchase your required feed and when you run out bring your tub back for a refill with a discount! We have a great variety of feeds available in this offer, including peanuts, sunflower hearts, premium no-mess seed and a wild bird mix.
We also sell a great selection of other feed, both in bulk and smaller packets. As mentioned above net-free fat balls attract a variety of bird species and they are perfect for providing birds with a boost of calories to replenish their energy stores. We stock a great variety of fat balls and other suet products for your garden birds.
Whichever feed you choose make sure you've got the right feeders and accessories to go with it! All of which we stock in store!
One of our favourite new products is the wonderful Jacobi Jayne's Flutter Butter, which is a no-salt peanut butter which is loved by wild birds. It's available in a variety of "flavours". The Flutter Butter comes in a tub or in a handy "Pod" which contains 170g of butter. The pods are made from a recyclable plastic and are easily attached to any of the many Flutter Butter feeders that we have available. The window feeder is one of our favourites, it suckers to the window and allows you to watch the birds as they come and go to feed. Hanging feeders are also available.
Now is a great time to start feeding and caring for the birds in your garden as we approach the RSPB Big Garden Bird Watch between 29th and 31st January. Download their guide which will help you to identify the birds in your garden. Spend an hour counting and identifying the birds in your garden and let the RSPB know what you saw. Not only is this a great activity for the whole family but it also helps the RSPB to keep an eye on the number of wild birds and statistics for each species. Food and shelter is a great way to attract more birds and species into your garden.
Whether you already care for the wild birds in your garden or are looking to start now we are more than happy to offer some help and guidance on what's right for you, pop into store or give us a call on 01652 633006! Plus all our bird feed, tables and accessories are available for local delivery too!