Birds have a hard time over the winter months. The cold weather can cut off many different species from their regular food supply, not to mention freezing over their usual sources of water. The lower the temperature, the more energy the birds need, especially when they have families to provide for as well. With wild food lacking, bird feeding in our gardens becomes more important for their survival.

With that in mind, we have created a list of ten handy tips that you can implement at home, to give the birds in your garden the helping hand that they need.

  • Know which birds visit, and feed accordingly. Different birds eat different things. Some, like starlings, will eat just about anything, but most have more specific diets. Robins, for example, like fruit and worms, whereas sparrows prefer seeds. We can give you advice as to which is the best food to buy for each species.
  • Vary what types of feed you offer. Too much salt can be harmful to birds, so salted nuts and leftovers are not good. Unsalted nuts and seeds work very well, as well as fatty foods, to provide the birds with extra energy.
  • Watch out for pets who might catch the birds. Predators often hunt around accessible bird feeders, so make sure you keep yours away from anything that could be used as cover. It is also important that you keep your pets safe, some foods that birds eat, such as vine fruits, can be toxic to dogs
  • Offer plenty of food for extra energy. The cold weather means that birds, like other animals, need more energy to survive. This is why you must put plenty of food in the feeder, to supplement the limited supply of wild food available to them.
  • Keep your birdfeeder clean. Don’t leave any leftovers on the feeder. It can go mouldy, which makes it poisonous, but it will also attract unwanted pests such as rats.
  • Make sure water baths don’t freeze. As it gets colder, natural water sources begin to freeze over, preventing the birds from drinking. This is why it is vital that they water baths in your garden remain unfrozen, so that they can still get the water that they need.
  • Be consistent with your feeding. As the weather gets worse, we may be less and less inclined to go outside and see to the bird-feeder. Bu this is when the birds need you most. Remember that the food you provide may very well be keeping them alive.
  • Keep a routine for the birds to follow. Putting food out at regular intervals, at the same times every day, allows the birds to get into a routine that is easy to follow.
  • Remove the snow below the feeder. Some birds will feed on the birdied that falls from the table onto the ground below. So, by removing any snow that falls there, you are allowing them to access even more food.

Content for Homefeeds.