Many small birds die of cold over the winter months. By putting out a little extra food you can really help them out and you get the added bonus of being able to enjoy watching these amazing animals close up and personal.
Top tips for feeding birds this winter:
- Don’t give too much food: Amounts provided should allow it to be eaten quickly to reduce the chance of food becoming mouldy or contaminated.
- In cold weather good leftovers with a high fat content such as bacon rind, grated cheese, cooked rice and pasta will be beneficial.
- Don’t put out salted nuts, desiccated coconut, spiced food or dry bread.
- Food that has been contaminated with droppings and saliva can encourage some diseases that affect birds so clean your bird feeder, table and bath regularly with boiling water and disinfectant.
- Always wear gloves when cleaning your feeders. Brushes and equipment used for cleaning bird feeders should not be used for other purposes and should be kept and used outside.
- Supplementary feeding can never provide all the natural proteins and vitamins that birds need so try to also include natural food sources in your garden.
- Make sure there is fresh water available year-round for birds
- Break the ice on a frozen bird bath, something like a light plastic ball can help to keep the surface from freezing by moving around in the wind.