A reader sent two hand-made, wooden suet feeders. I filled them and the birds emptied them. I refilled some older bags of suet. That is gone. The previous bags that went down slowly are hanging flat.
A trip to the meat market will refill them tomorrow. I am also running low on sunflower seeds and dried meal worms. Sharon Lovejoy suggested many kinds of seed, including wheat and corn, for a greater variety of birds.
Diversity of food helps. Another method is to have various levels and types of feeding stations.
I keep the squirrels on the filing cabinet at the Jackson Bird Spa. They leave the bird feeder near our window alone. Chickadees raid the nearby one all the time, and we get purple finches resting and eating there. Starlings are used to seeing me stand inches away, and all the birds are getting accustomed rather than flying away at the slightest movement.
The Jackson Bird Spa has many important features:
- The filing cabinet has a top, a shelf underneath, and a drawer, so various animals feel comfortable using one of the levels. If a squirrel is in the drawer, the birds are on the top layer.
- A pile of sticks is stacked up for perching. Many birds will rest there, do some beak wiping, or look for food that I toss there.
- The ground has four pans of water, often frozen now, but thawed with hot water each afternoon. The birds are increasingly more fun as they splash and drink there. The starlings are clowns or little children in the baths.
- The abundance of leaves and mulch means that insect life is ready to pop up and feed more birds as the soil and air warm up.
- The aerial aqueduct will sprinkle and bathe many birds at once, giving them a safe place to get cleaned and watered. Where the hose puddles on the ground, shy birds like the cardinal will gather.
PS - Sassy says I owe her a walk outside.