6th December 2021
Bird-feeding can be a wonderful pastime for property owners, particularly in recent times, when many of us have been more homebound than before. However, as the cold weather approaches rapidly, it’s important that you keep some things in mind, to ensure that you can practice bird feeding safely and efficiently over the winter.
Our experts at L&J Outdoor Services have compiled a quick, thorough set of tips to keep in mind for your winter bird feeding adventure, so let’s get to it.
Consider timid birds
Sure, so you’ve put up a bird feeder, and a bird bath, and like to think that’s enough. However, you need to be thoughtful of more timid birds, which are less likely to come out of the woodwork and approach a traditional bird feeder.
For such shy birds, it might be a good idea to sprinkle bits of food around trees, bushes, and other such more secluded feeding places.
Tip: Good news! You can even use some human food leftovers to feed these birds, such as grated cheese. However, not all leftovers work for birds. You will generally want to stay away from foods that are too fat, or salty.
Keep the bird bath from freezing
If you’re going to feed birds, you might as well extend your friendliness to a bird bath. However, it’s important to make sure that the water in your bird bath or pond doesn’t freeze over the winter.
There are some things you can do to ensure this. If using a bird bath, you will probably want to move it to a sunny location, where it can absorb more heat, even during the cold weather. Similarly, it might be a good idea to darken up the surface (either using a darkened basin, or adding dark rocks in the water), since it has a better ability to absorb heat.
Just as you would with any other pet, you will want to clean their feeding area regularly to protect against the spreading of disease and keep your birds happy and healthy. Maintaining a clean bird feeding area is also important for your own health. Speaking of which, you’ll want to make sure you thoroughly clean your hands after each time you handle the feeding area.
Moderation is key
While it might seem like a sign of generosity to layout ample supplies of bird feed for your winged guests, it’s actually a detrimental practice. Ideally, you should only put out the amount of feed you believe will be eaten over the day, so as to avoid attracting other intruders, such as rats.
Nuisance wildlife is commonly attracted by bird feeders, or unguarded pet food, so you’ll want to keep a close eye on the supplies you leave out in the open.
Shelter your bird feeder
During the winter, it’s important to set up your bird feeder in a sheltered area, where it won’t be at risk from strong winds, or snow. Yet, you want to make sure that your bird feeder is in an area where it can allow the birds to fly away easily, in case they are ambushed by a predator (such as a cat).