Tuesday, February 1, 2011

National Bird Feeding Month

If you haven't heard, February is National Bird Feeding Month, and this year the birds need those extra tasty tidbits more than ever. The extreme snowfall over much of the country and even the bitter cold here in Utah make it harder for birds to find food just at a time they need more calories to maintain enough body heat to survive.

I have over a dozen feeders around my two yards - front and back - as well as the new crabapple and hawthorne trees. Most of my feeders have hulled sunflower seeds for fantastic energy without any residual mess, and I also feed Nyjer, cracked corn and mixed seed. Even more important than just feeding, though, is taking care of your feeders even in the harshest weather conditions - keep feeding trays clear and snow away from feeding ports and perches so the birds can access the food easily.

Every step you go beyond just feeding the birds can also help them survive these harsh storms. Keep a heated bird bath clean and filled for fresh water, and provide shelter in a brush pile, roosting boxes, or sheltered niches for roosting birds. You'll be rewarded as even in the most wicked part of winter, your yard is alive with energetic, healthy birds. I know mine is, and even on the days when the weather keeps me indoors, I am able to enjoy that touch of nature as my birds flit back and forth through the yard.


Badione said...

What bird is pictured in this post (the bird with red on it)?

Melissa said...

That's a male house finch, Badione, one of the most common visitors to my feeders this season. They're still nice birds, though!