|a good book, and a cup of hot cocoa. Even if you slow down your birdwatching adventures in winter, you still enjoy seeing them feed outside your window. In addition to standard feeders, try the following creative ideas for feeding birds in winter. Each engages you in a fun, outdoor activity while ensuring your birds have plenty to eat during months when natural food sources are scarce. These are great winter time activities to do with your kids!
Build a Snowman
What, you ask, does building a snowman have in common with bird feeding? Well, not only is building a snowman a fun and festive way to welcome winter, but it can also be a creative, just-the-right-height way to deliver bird food. Build a snowman out of three balls of snow as usual, and then use birdseed and other bird foods to create the snowman's details.
suet logs to create a smile. Give your snowman hair by dangling
millet from its head. Or, sprinkle some
black sunflower or
thistle seeds onto its head.
Dried sunflowers make ideal ear muffs. Make eyes and a nose out of
suet balls or
Make tasty buttons out of
seed ornaments. To complete your snowman, use branches to provide birds a place to perch. Favorites like these are sure to attract a variety of birds.
Many people decorate their outdoor trees for the holidays. We suggest you forgo the strings of lights and bundles of tinsel and, instead, use only bird-edible materials that birds can eat safely. Turn your backyard conifers into works of art.
Make your own
pinecone feeder ornaments, or simply cut
suet cakes into 4 smaller squares, punch a hole through the middle, and string from the branches to make square ornaments.
You can also decorate a tree by draping millet sprigs from it, stringing garland made from dried fruit and popcorn, and much more. Be creative, and remember to keep birds' safety in mind by staying away from processed human foods that can be harmful to birds.
When the wind blows and the snow falls, gather your friends and family - especially your children - and use your creativity to design an edible snowman or decorate a tree. Not only will you be given an opportunity to spend time in nature, but you will ensure your wild birds are fed well during the long winter months.