Nestled on an Evergreen Branch the Birds Feed Safely
As we watch the winter last seemingly forever and see the birds struggling to find a bite eat, many of us will do whatever we can to make sure they find some. In the desolation of winter, the birds remaining bring us great joy as
the reminder that all is well in the outdoors in spite of the weather.
My friends have commented to me how unsuccessful they have been at attracting birds to their yards during the winter months. There can be many reasons for this ranging from the simple fact that the birds which would eat the food provided just aren’t hungry. Maybe there is a ready source of food for them the next block over in a place they’ve been in the past. Or maybe the birds near your house prefer something other than what you have provided. Diets vary profoundly from species to species. Some birds eat grains and seeds or fruit, while others eat insects and grubs.
Most likely though, it is the surroundings and atmosphere of one backyard as compared to another. One backyard makes the bird feel safe and another does not. If the bird feed you are using is attracting no birds to your yard, take note of where you are placing your feed. Is it out in the wide open or right on your window sill in a place where the birds are easy for you to spot? If so, you might be more successful changing your feeding locations.
While there is little cover in the winter as the trees are bare and the shrubs are too, realize the birds are uncomfortable out in the open eating with no cover at all. Try placing your feeder in a tree or near shrubbery. Regardless the level of foliage on the plants, the birds will feel safer in a location such as this. Chances are you will soon see birds coming into your yard to feed if you make this easy change in feeding places.
After you’ve changed the atmosphere in the birds favor, then evaluate what you are feeding them. Given the fewer birds in the colder climes during winter, in order to attract more birds, you will want to put more than one type of food out.
My recommendation is to start with some peanuts, some suet (hard uncooked beef fat), and table scraps such as bacon rinds, breads and crumbs, and some fruit pieces. These items should cover most of the species and bring you good results for winter bird watching.