Winter Bird Feeding Tips

Bird feeding in the cold, dreary winter months is critical for the survival of non-migratory birds. Birds maintain very little body fat, keeping them in need of a consistent and large number of calories to maintain body heat during the frigid temperature of winter. With a winter bird feeder and heated bird bath, you can make your backyard a safe-haven for a variety of birds such as Woodpeckers, Mourning Doves, Blue Jays, Chickadees, Titmice, Cardinals and more!

Winter Bird Feeders
Winter birds need a lot of calories to maintain their energy and body heat. This energy is most critical in the morning hours as winter birds use up their reserves during the long winter nights. Less daylight means less time for feeding. Winter birds seek out condensed calories found in fats and oils. Suet cakes, made of beef fat blended with bird seed, are very effective for giving your winter birds the calorie dense food they need. Keeping suet cakes available in your suet bird feeders will help many of your winter birds survive the deadly winter temperatures.

A variety of tube bird feeders, hopper bird feeders and platform bird feeders dispersed around your yard are necessary for the winter birds not able to cling to a suet feeder. For these winter bird feeders, consider seeds with high oil content such as yellow safflower seeds. It is important to keep your bird feeders full and clear of snow. Accessories such as weather guards can help you maintain a clean eating area. When filling your bird feeders, do not forget to stomp down the snow on the ground under the feeders and spread a little seed on the compacted area. Ground feeding winter birds including cardinals, mourning doves and juncos need their nutrients as well.

Winter Bird Baths
Birds in the winter still need water for hydration and preening. Help your feathered friends when lakes and streams freeze over with a heated bird bath. If winter birds are unable to regularly clean their feathers they will lose their insulating abilities making the bird vulnerable to the frigid temperatures. Don’t let that happen on your watch! Attract a crowd and keep them warm this winter to your backyard with a heated bird bath.

Winter Bird Seed
Birds feeding in the winter have no choice but to be resourceful, snacking on fat dense foods during the short daylights of the winter months. Fat contains 9 calories per gram as compared to the 4 calories per gram found in carbohydrates and proteins. Variety is the key when selecting high fat and oil containing bird seed.

Suet cakes are an obvious choice but be sure to also offer yellow safflower seeds, black oil sunflower seeds, cracked peanuts and thistle (for the goldfinches). Hang your bird feeders in various locations to decrease competition and allow more birds to feed at one time. As the season moves along, daylight hours are scarce. Ease the burden on your feathered friends with a consistent source of bird feed. Bird Feeders, Etc. is your one-stop online source for all your winter bird feeding needs.