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Thread: Feeding wild birds in the garden

  1. #1
    burnie is offline Veggie gardener
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    Jul 2006

    Default Feeding wild birds in the garden

    Just some thoughts of what I am doing and why.
    I have stopped buying "bird seed" as I am unhappy with the amount of waste seed that the birds are actually throwing on the floor, they clearly don't like it.
    I now only put out Niger seed for the finches, peanuts and sunflowers seeds/hearts as there seems to be much less waste. I also have fat balls/slabs and add some wind fall apples on the ground for the blackbirds and robins. A supply of water and that's about it.

  2. #2
    Jungle Jane's Avatar
    Jungle Jane is offline Early Fruiter
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    Feb 2015


    Ive noticed seed waste on the ground,I think worms eat some of it,there was a lot of worms amongst it when I was digging the seed mix soil over earlier in the year but I donít know. In the area where I put mealworms & suet bits on the grass,the mud looked disturbed like the worms have come up to eat but I havenít seen them,itís just what Iím wondering. Birds might be meaning to feed the worms to fatten them up for them to eat
    Nicos, veggiechicken and burnie like this.

  3. #3
    veggiechicken's Avatar
    veggiechicken is online now Warning!! Contains Nuts
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    May 2006
    Sunshiny South Wales
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    I stopped feeding seed and peanuts a couple of years ago because of the scatter which was attracting rats. The chooks had to be brought in to clear it up - not that they minded.
    Now I buy fat logs/balls that are in wire enclosures. Fallen apples stay on the ground and I'm hoping that the goldfinches will come back to feed on the verbena seed heads overwinter - as they did last year.
    Nicos, burnie and Jungle Jane like this.
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  4. #4
    Bren In Pots's Avatar
    Bren In Pots is offline Bad Hair Day
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    Mar 2007
    In the Shires
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    We have a fair few Teasels in the garden the Gold finches love them other than that its fat balls and apples that I've had in the freezer.
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  5. #5
    Greenleaves's Avatar
    Greenleaves is online now The Weed Fairy
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    Apr 2014


    We don't feed in the garden because of visitors from the neighbouring woods. I do however feed them over the plots, mainly fat logs and pinkies (small maggots)
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  6. #6
    Scarlet's Avatar
    Scarlet is offline O'Hara
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    Feb 2010
    Just over the bridge


    I did stop feeding them seed because of the unwelcome visitors - squirrels as well as rats.
    I never use fat balls because the starlings come in droves and they are gone in an hour or so.
    Though last year I started buying seed again. I miss seeing the birds on the table. I only use sunflower hearts, it is expensive but there's little mess.
    Last edited by Scarlet; 17-11-2018 at 06:36 PM.
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  7. #7
    mothhawk's Avatar
    mothhawk is offline Mature Fruiter
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    Apr 2011


    I've just recently cut down from two sunflower heart feeders to one, and replaced the other with two suet feeders. So many goldfinches were coming to the sunflowers ( as many as three dozen at a time) that the other little birds such as willow and blue tits were too intimidated to come. Plus the goldfinch flock attracted the attention of two sparrowhawks who have snatched at least two that I have seen.

    Now there is only room for four to feed at a time they squabble more and come in much smaller groups, and the robin and tits are beginning to come to the suet feeders. Wood pigeons scoff any bits that fall to the ground.

    Any apple cores I have are chucked onto the garden for the blackbirds, and the dunnocks appreciate the fine crumbs from the breadboard and biscuit tin.
    Endless wonder.

  8. #8
    4Shoes's Avatar
    4Shoes is offline Cropper
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    Sep 2017
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    We buy the high energy feeds. The birds continue to self select the best food and throw the remainder away, so the get a feeder full and then have to eat up what is on the floor before it is filled again (unless there is snow cover.)

    Fat balls and pea nuts in other area of garden.
    burnie likes this.

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