Winter can be a challenging time for birds in our garden birds, find out why leaving out food for them can help them to overcome some of those challenges.
From spring through to
winter, each season brings with it a new host of challenging obstacles that
birds will have to face and overcome. Winter is arguably one of the most
difficult seasons for birds as their natural food sources are scarce,
temperatures are low, and they must work hard to preserve energy in a bid to
keep themselves warm. During periods of
bad weather, birds will come to rely on your feeders as an essential source of
Discover some of the reasons
why we should feed birds in winter;
• Natural food sources are low
During the winter months, the natural food sources that birds would have relied on during summer and autumn will have reduced significantly. The soil surface will become cold and may often be covered in a sheet of snow or ice so any insects will have burrowed deep beneath, making it almost impossible for birds to reach them. Berries also run very low during winter, and any that may be left on the bushes could get blown away by wind or left damaged due to high rainfall.
• Less time for foraging
Shorter days during the
winter months mean that the time birds have available to forage around our
gardens and surrounding spaces for food is significantly shorter. Because food
sources are so depleted during these months, birds will already need to spend
longer looking for food. But with a shortened day and harsher weather
conditions, this only becomes more and more difficult. In the end, the birds
will waste valuable energy and time searching for food that may not be there.
• To help preserve energy
Having a fully loaded bird table or feeder in your garden will help birds to preserve and store their energy during the winter months. During these months, they will require energy to keep warm. They will need to lay down fat reserves to help them through the longer winter nights. Some bird species need to consume as much as a third of their bodyweight during daylight hours every single day just to survive the cold winter nights. So, you can imagine how glad they will be to find a full table of bird food waiting for them on your feeders and tables!
• To help them prepare for spring mating
When birds have access to
more nutrients in winter, the spring mating season will be more successful.
Chicks will have healthier weights, and egg laying will happen earlier. By
keeping your garden birds fully stocked with an array of ingredients, you will
not only help them in the short term but also for months ahead in the Spring.
Choosing a bird food for winter
Birds will be
actively searching for food sources during the winter, so by having a fully
stocked table during those months, you can almost guarantee that they will
visit you. They will be keen to source any food that is high in fat, energy,
and protein. Our REFRESH: Extra Energy contains a
well-balanced feed for birds. The ingredients in this mixture have been
carefully selected for the benefits that they will provide to the birds during
the winter months. Energy rich ingredients like suet pellets, peanuts, and
raisins along with calorie loaded niger seeds will ensure that the birds have a
varied and substantial diet. Each of these ingredients provide the birds with a
boost of essentials protein and fats, helping them to effectively store energy
and keep themselves warm during colder temperatures.