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A quick overview of foods to avoid when feeding wild birds.

Feeding the birds that visit your garden is a great way to support wildlife and spot wild birds. You may even be tempted to share some leftovers from your own meals with your garden birds, however, while some human food is safe for birds, other things we eat can be potentially hazardous or even fatal to wild birds. That’s why you need to know what foods are safe and what foods to avoid. In this blog, we’ll take a look at what food you shouldn’t feed birds to keep your feathered friends safe and healthy.

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If you regularly feed the wild birds that visit your garden, you’ll want to make sure you never run out of bird feed. This means you’ll need to find a safe and convenient way to store your bird food supply to keep it fresh and easily to hand when it’s time to top up your bird feeders. If you want to know what is the best bird food storage container, read on and we’ll share our top tips on how to keep your wild bird food in tip-top condition.

Problems From Incorrectly Stored Bird Food

Incorrectly stored bird food can lead to a several problems. One of the major issues is that bird food such as sunflower seeds, peanuts and other wild bird seed is not only delicious for birds, it’s also highly attractive to pests, such as rats, mice and insects! If your birdseed isn’t stored correctly, pests can easily find their way to your supply and help themselves.

Another problem with poor bird food storage is that your bird food may be exposed to damp or extreme temperatures and begin to go bad. This can be dangerous – and even fatal – to birds that eat it.

Other problems with improper storage are that it can lead to spills of bird food and make refilling your bird feeders messy, tricky and time-consuming!

How To Tell If Your Bird Food Has Gone Bad

The first clue that your bird food has gone bad is if the wild birds visiting your garden don’t seem to be eating it anymore!

You can also inspect your bird feed for telltale clues. Check for insects (alive or dead) or other signs of an infestation. You can also do a sniff-test of your bird food. Musty odours suggest mould or mildew from damp seed. Sharp unpleasant smells are a definite warning sign that your bird food should be discarded.

Look out for signs that rodents may have got to your bird feed such as damaged containers,  teeth marks or signs of chewing and even trails of bird food leading away from the container or rodent droppings nearby.

a bird food container with a budgie next to it.

How To Store Bird Food Properly

The best way to store bird food is in a cool, dry place out of reach of pests. Your bird food containers should also have lids on them to keep your bird feed fresh and prevent contamination. If your bird food has gone bad and you are reusing a container, it’s best to thoroughly wash and disinfect the container after disposing of the old feed before you refill it with fresh bird food. If the container is damaged in any way (for example, it’s been chewed through) then it’s better to repair or replace it before filling it with new birdseed.

To keep your bird feed supply fresh and delicious for the birds visiting your garden, only buy enough bird food to match demand and throw away old seed before refilling containers (i.e. never mix old and new seed together.)

The Best Bird Food Storage Containers

So what is the best bird food storage container? Bird food containers come in all shapes and sizes and can be made of plastic or metal. Whichever style of bird food storage container you choose, you should ensure it has a lid to deter pests and keep your wild bird food fresh.

When considering what is the best bird food storage container think about where you’ll keep it. Containers close to feeders makes refilling bird feeders easier and many people choose a sheltered outdoor location like a garage, shed or storage box. You can store bird feed indoors but it needs to be kept cool so make sure it’s away from radiators or warm pipes and isn’t somewhere that is likely to get condensation or damp.

Smaller bird food storage containers are lighter and easier to move so are a good choice if you only store small amounts of bird feed or if you need to carry the container outside to your bird feeder, whereas larger containers are ideal for storing greater amounts of bird food.

Sturdy plastic bins, and galvanized metal containers are popular choices for bird food storage. The most important thing is to choose a bird food storage container that is durable and sturdy making it less likely to crack, rust or break over time and making it difficult for pests to chew through!

All storage containers should have a well-fitting lid to prevent insects and rodents from accessing your bird feed. Watertight lids are ideal as they’ll protect birdseed from the elements if stored outside. If you do keep your bird foor storage container outdoors, make sure it’s weighty enough not to be pushed or blown over!

Labelling your bird food storage container is a great idea so you know what type of bird feed is inside, or if you store several different types of wild bird food, choose clear containers for storage so you can easily identify which is which.

Storage Containers For Fat Balls and Live Bird Food

Fat balls or suet for birds should be stored separately from other types of bird feed (such as seeds) as these have a shorter shelf life, especially in warm or damp weather. They should be kept in their own sealed bird food storage container, ideally made from plastic.

Similarly, if you use live bird food such as live mealworms, these will need to be kept at a specific temperature to prevent them hatching into beetles. A cool, dark, well-ventilated area between 8 and 10 degrees celsius is ideal and you should choose storage containers with deep sides and a lid.

Can you grow the sunflower seeds you find in your bird mix? Sunflower seeds for birds are a popular garden treat for our feathered friends but maybe you’re worried about ending up with a field full of sunflowers! Or you may want to give growing sunflowers a go? Let’s find out if bird food sunflower seeds will actually amount to much.

Sunflower Seeds For Birds

First of all, it’s important to distinguish between the different types of sunflower seeds available for feeding birds.

In our shop, we stock:

We favour providing sunflower hearts over black sunflower as they’re even more nutritious for birds. Black sunflower seeds may grow if you plant them in the ground and provide the right conditions – they turn into lovely multi-headed sunflowers.

Sunflower hearts and heart chips have had their seed husk removed so will therefore never grow. These are a favourite with birds and are great for fledglings because of their smaller size. But, if you were expecting to grow sunflowers from nutritious hearts, you will be disappointed.

Wont Grow Bird Food

How does bird food end up germinating anyway?

Bird food sprouts and grows into plants – sometimes even when you’ve carefully filled feeders or placed food on a table because birds sift through food looking for their favourite bits. You may have spotted blackbirds doing this – they will pick up seeds, one by one, discarding the ones they don’t fancy! These discarded seeds end up on the ground and can germinate. Not every seed will germinate as seeds need the right conditions to grow – the right amount of light, heat etc but some will make it.

Now, if you don’t want anything to grow in your garden, you may be interested in purchasing a ‘won’t grow’ bird seed mix.

No mess mixes are specially formulated with ingredients that won’t ever germinate. The variety we sell contain sunflower hearts, kibbled maize, pinhead oats, and rapeseed oil. None of these food items will germinate so your garden will be free of pesky sunflowers and other unwanted plants.

a great tit eating sunflower seeds for birds from a hanging feeder

Growing Sunflowers From Bird Food

Now, if you want to grow sunflowers in your garden, you definitely can use the ones from bird food.

You won’t know which variety your sunflowers are but if you just want pretty plants then that won’t matter so much.

Here is what you will need to grow sunflowers from sunflower seeds for birds:

  • Small pots or a seed tray
  • Compost (always try to go for a peat-free one as it’s better for the environment!)
  • A clear plastic bag – a food bag is ideal.

Simply fill your pots or seed tray with compost, ensuring the soil is level and then give it a good water. It’s better to do this first so you don’t wash your seeds around!

You will then need to push your sunflower seeds into the soil, about an inch deep is right. This is much deeper than many other types of seed that like to germinate on top of the soil. It’s also the reason why sunflower seeds don’t often germinate by chance when they fall from a feeding station.

You should then cover the pot with a plastic bag – this will help generate a bit more warmth and help the soil retain moisture.

You should see germination fast – around 4-10 days. Once your seedlings have their first ‘true leaves, the ones that grow after the seeds first baby leaves have emerged, you can carefully remove the tiny plants from their pots and plant them in your garden! Once they’re off to a good start, sunflowers don’t require much care other than the odd drink if it’s warm.

Alternatively, once the last frosts have passed (usually around the end of April, start of May in the UK) you can plant seeds directly in your garden. Just watch out for slugs nibbling on the emerging seedlings.

a sunflower seedling emerging from the ground

Can You Feed Birds With Homegrown Sunflower Seeds?

If you manage to successfully grow your sunflowers, you will see them flower and then enjoy the magnificent seed heads that form. Each sunflower head can hold hundreds and hundreds of seeds!

Sunflowers produce way more seed than you will ever need to grow the plant again so it’s best to let the birds eat the leftover seeds. First, remove a few ripe seeds to save for planting next year (pop them in an envelope and store them in a cool, dry place) and then simply leave the rest of the seeds on the plant and let the birds enjoy their natural bird feeder. Goldfinches, in particular, love swinging around on sunflowers picking out the seeds!

Bird feeders provide wild birds with an accessible and reliable food source (providing, of course, the feeder is topped up regularly!) Bird feeders are also an excellent accessory for your yard, garden or allotment, helping nature, encouraging wildlife and allowing you to spot and get to know the wild birds that visit your feeder.

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If you enjoy bird watching at home or just enjoy feeding them in your garden then you probably leave out food. If you do there are certain things you need to be aware of like can bird food go bad and how to spot when feed is rotten.

nuthatch bird on table

Why Leave Food Out?

Feeding birds can get you closer to wildlife at home. Food can be hard for birds to find and if you leave it out for them you can do a lot of good and help them survive. Food from a specialist like Kennedy wild bird food has been specially designed to help birds.

All of our feeds are specially designed to make sure that birds have all the nutrients, calories and proteins they need to do everything they need to do. Whether it’s staying warm, making a long journey or having the energy to look for more food. Some of the products we sell include:

Mixed Birdseed

Mealworms For Birds

Peanuts For Birds

Plain Wild Bird Seeds

Suet For Birds

Sunflower Seeds For Birds

There are lots of different ways you can choose to feed the birds. You just need to make sure that it is a place that the birds can easily get to but is still in the same place. Make sure it is elevated off the ground to protect the birds from ground predators like cats and foxes, but also if possible, try and place food somewhere safe and secluded like under a tree or against the wall. This is so birds of prey can’t swoop down and take birds while they feed.

You can choose to scatter food on a roof, a bird table or hang the food up in a bird feeder. However you choose to leave the food out for the bird make sure you don’t leave too much out as it can go bad if left out for a long time. If this happens you need to know how to spot when the bird food has gone bad.

Sunflower Seeds for birds

Can Bird Food Go Bad?

Bird food is just like any other and because of this, it can go bad if left out for too long. This usually happens when it rains and the bird food gets wet then dries out again however just like any food it can go bad when left out.

Bird food tends to get worse after it’s been left out for around 3 days. If you don’t want it to go bad then make sure you only ever leave out enough food for 3 days at the most, but if you can it’s better to leave out enough for one day and top it up when you need to.

Eating spoiled or rotten feed can be very bad for birds and not only will it fail to give them the nutrients they need, but it could also make them ill. If you don’t want this to happen then you need to be able to spot when bird food has gone bad.

When birdseed gets wet and goes bad it will start to form clumps. Birdseed does have some natural clumps and if they break away easily in your fingers then it’s nothing to be concerned about, but if the clumps are strong and don’t break up easily then the bird food has gone bad. When this happens you might need to clean the bird feeder it was in as the clumps can sometimes block holes and make it harder for birds to eat.

Another tell-tale sign the bird feed has gone bad is when there are obvious signs of rotting. This can be stuff like mould forming on the bird food or insects that have started to hang around the feeders or table more. Again, some insects are normal, but if there is a lot of them or you notice some insects have laid eggs in the birdseed then it is time to throw it out.

If you are feeding the birds seeds or grains then sometimes these can germinate over time, especially if they have gotten wet. You can tell when this is happening if you see shoots starting to form in your bird feeder. Other signs of this include the seeds swelling or splitting open and when this happens birds will not eat them.

great tit bird on feeder

If you want to feed the birds at home, then you need to make your garden a warm and inviting place that the birds will want to visit. Adding a birdbath can be a great way to do this, but there are some pros & cons to having a birdbath that you should be aware of before you make any decisions.

What Is a Bird Bath?

A birdbath is a small shallow basin that is filled with water and left out in your garden. It can help provide birds with water to drink and to bathe in and this can attract a lot of birds to your garden, it can, however, cause some problems and you need to make sure that you have thought of all the pros and cons.

blackbird in bird bath

The Pros of Getting a Bird Bath?

Bird Baths Can Attract More Birds To Your Garden

Birds will be looking to land somewhere where there is water. If your garden has water then a bird is more likely to want to stay and feed there.

This is great if you are a home birdwatcher or enjoy feeding the birds as it means more birds will visit your garden. Birds will be attracted to any kind of water feature like a pond or fountain, but if you don’t have one of these then a birdbath is a great alternative way to attract birds and give them water.

They Are A Safe Way For Birds To Get Water

Birds need water to survive. They get thirsty and exhausted just like any other creature and they must have access to good clean drinking water. This is especially important in summer when birds can overheat and need to drink water to keep cool.

You can leave water for birds in any sort of dish that is shallow enough for them to stand, but deep enough to wade in. a large bowl or dish can be left on the ground for birds to bathe but this can leave them open to the ground predators.

Birdbaths are elevated meaning the bird can get to the water and not have to be on alert for a cat or fox that might be waiting on the ground nearby.

Keeping Clean Can Help Birds Survive

Birds need to do something called preening, this is when they use oil from something called their preen gland to coat their feathers. This oil coating will help keep their feathers strong enough to fly and more importantly keep them waterproof so they can still fly even if it rains.

bird in bird bath

The Cons of Getting a Bird Bath?

You Need to Keep Filling Your Bird Bath Up

Birdbaths need to be constantly filled with water. You need to be able to keep an eye on the birdbath a make sure that the water levels aren’t getting too low.

Constantly refilling the birdbath can be a chore especially if you struggle to carry heavy items and you can’t be filling and carrying a basin once a day. You can fill the birdbath with a garden hose, but in high temperatures, in summer there may be a hosepipe ban and then you might not be able to fill your birdbath.

They Can Leave Birds Open To Predators

Although a birdbath can keep your garden birds safe from ground predators they might still be at risk of attack. There are other predators like birds of prey who might be able to swoop down and take birds from the birdbath, especially if the birdbath is in an uncovered area that the birds of prey can easily get to.

They Can House Disease and Make Birds Ill

Birdbaths can end up spreading disease like avian flu and making birds very ill. If birds are constantly washing in your birdbath then the water can quickly become contaminated with dirt, bacteria and faeces which can become a breeding ground for germs that will make the bird in your garden very sick.

Some avian diseases are spread very quickly and if just one sick bird uses your birdbath, then every other bird that uses it can catch the illness. Remember to regularly clean your birdbath to stop the spread of diseases and make sure to always wear gloves and keep safe when you are doing so.

blue tit birds in bird bath

There are lots of different birds in the UK and many of them will happily come to your garden to eat food when they can. There is one bird however that you can be sure will always come to visit your garden.

The pigeon is a common bird here in the UK and don’t be surprised if you see them start to visit your garden more often when they realise you have food. If you notice pigeons in your garden are looking for food then here is what bird food you can feed to pigeons.

wood pigeon birds mate for life

Should I Feed Pigeons?

There is a bit of a debate on whether or not you can feed pigeons in the UK. Pigeons, at least wild pigeons, are often seen as pests and some places might discourage you from feeding them. This is because if pigeons discover a place has food, they will start to hang around more and pigeons can breed very fast meaning if you are not careful a place can easily become overrun with them.

This is an issue for tourist attractions and places with a lot of eateries or shops. Pigeons can be very disruptive, and it can cause trouble for these vendors if pigeons are harassing and pestering their customers. This is why it is generally discouraged when it comes to feeding pigeons in public.

You can, however leave food out for the pigeons that visit your garden. If you have a bird feeder or bird table pigeons will naturally gravitate towards them and you should have no problem getting them to feed in your garden.

What Bird Food Can I Feed To Pigeons?

What Do Pigeons Eat?

Pigeons are very resourceful and resilient birds that will probably eat almost anything given the chance. If you have ever seen a pigeon in a busy city or town centre chances are they haven’t gotten to be so plump and well-fed eating bird food and insects.

Pigeons, like most birds, tend to go for bread when they are looking for food in busy areas. If you want you can feed the pigeons that visit your garden bread also along with any other food scraps that are safe for birds to eat. Pigeons may be resilient, but they are still just birds with fragile digestive systems so make sure to always check before you feed them anything.

Of course, it is always best to feed pigeons proper, good quality bird food that has been specially designed and checked to be good for them and safe for birds to eat.

If you are keeping pigeons as pets or plan to use them for racing then you must feed them the right food and make sure that they are healthy and eating properly. Here at Kennedy Wild Bird Food, we have a range of bird food that has been specially designed for birds, both wild birds or pets, so you know your pigeon is getting food that will help them.

collared dove bird eating fat ball

What Bird Food Can I Feed To Pigeons?

As mentioned before pigeons can eat practically any bird food you give them but they are particularly drawn to seeds. Here at Kennedy Wild Bird Food, we have a range of bird seeds and birdseed mixes that you can feed to pigeons and feel safe knowing that they are getting the best quality birds seeds that they can get.

Remember to always buy seeds for birds through a bird food specialist. You can buy seeds from the supermarket but they are often expensive and haven’t been tested to make sure that they are safe for birds. With a bird food specialist, you can be confident that the food you are leaving out for the birds is guaranteed not the cause the bird any harm.

An important thing to remember with pigeons is they can be rather greedy, you might notice a lot of pigeons are rather plump. Pigeons have become scavengers over the years and they never know when they will get their next meal, because of this they will eat and eat until they are full. Keep this in mind when you leave food out for pros and make sure you don’t leave too much food out for them, you might think you are being helpful by leaving a generous amount out but they can end up eating more than

One of the simplest pleasures in life is spotting wild birds in our gardens and local area and this is something we can all enjoy year-round. If you’re looking for bird feed to help you spot wild birds in winter, we have some suggestions to get you started.

Why is bird feed so important for wild birds in winter?

Colder temperatures and harsher weather conditions during the long winter months make life harder for birds. Even birds that have adapted to survive the cold UK winters can benefit from additional bird feed during winter, as their natural food sources will be in shorter supply, particularly in snowy or icy conditions.

Birds require a wide range of nutrients to survive all year round but particularly in bad weather when flying conditions are poor and birds will use more energy in their search for food, water and shelter. Extra bird feed can give wild birds the additional energy they need to make these difficult journeys.

The ‘Hungry Gap’ refers to a period of winter where seed-bearing crops are in short supply in the UK. The British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) found some birds may be at risk of disappearing from the British countryside because they are struggling to find adequate food between February and April as most of the seed-bearing crop fields are ploughed at this time.

All wild birds also need fat in their diet so that they can store it to keep warm during winter, however not all fats are suitable for birds, so it’s important to choose the right type of bird feed if you want to help wild birds in winter.

Bird Feed To Help You Spot Wild Birds In Winter

Which bird feed should I choose?

We have lots of bird feed options and many contain a balance of nutrients that are suitable for year-round use. Our wild bird feed mixes use a blend of the highest quality ingredients and are the result of over 20 years of research into bird feed. This means that no matter which of the Kennedy wild bird seed mixes you choose, they can be used to support wild birds throughout the year.

We even have options for attracting specific birds to your garden, such as our Robin Bird Food, designed especially for Britain’s most popular bird and a symbol of winter.

Here are some other excellent choices of bird feed to help you spot wild birds in winter.

Superior Economy Wild Bird Seed

Our superior economy wild bird seed contains Black Sunflower Seeds which are full of essential nutrients and have a high oil content to help build healthy fat reserves and Sunflower Hearts which are highly nutritious and easy for fast feasting, making them ideal bird feed for winter. This bird feed is versatile to attract a wide variety of birds and is perfect for feeding all year round. You can use it in a seed feeder or scatter it on a bird table.

High Energy Bird Feed Premium Quality

Our high energy bird feed is blended with the highest quality seed, perfect for all small garden and farmland birds. It can be used all year round but has been specially designed to bridge the ‘hungry gap’ when food is scarce and its high energy content makes it perfect for even the coldest winter weather. This bird feed is best fed from a feeder or bird table and can also be scattered on the ground.

Suet Pellets Bird Feed Mixed Flavours

Our suet pellets bird feed is a great way to provide wild birds with high energy food. It contains a mixture of Insect Pellets, Berry Flavour Pellets and Mealworm Suet Pellets. This bird feed is designed to give wild birds a boost and help them survive in harsh weather. It can be dispensed from a suet pellet feeder all year round.

mixed suet pellets bird food

What wild birds might I spot in winter?

Once you’ve chosen your bird feed to help you spot wild birds in winter, what birds can you expect to see in your garden?

In winter, even the shyest of wild birds will be tempted to leave the safety and shelter of their usual woodlands and hedgerows to search for food in our gardens and near our homes, making them easier to spot.

Resident Starlings visit gardens year-round and you may spot even more of these sociable birds during the winter months as some migrate here from Europe for winter, arriving in autumn and staying until February or March.

The Blue Tit is a colourful garden visitor. These delicate little birds enjoy mixed bird feed, fat balls and sunflower hearts. They can be spotted in woodlands, hedges, parks and gardens across the UK.

Goldfinches have a distinctive red face and though some fly south for winter, others remain in the UK year-round. These birds are seed specialists and are particularly attracted to niger seeds.

Perhaps one of the cutest wild birds to spot in winter, Long-tailed Tits are small and fluffy. They visit bird feeders in winter when their usual choice of insects and invertebrates are in short supply. They don’t stay still for long but travel in flocks, making them easier to spot flitting from branch to branch.

You are also likely to spot common garden birds such as Wood Pigeons and House Sparrows.

Unusual birds you may be lucky enough to spot in winter include Waxwings. They don’t breed in the UK but visit during winter. These garden birds have colourful tails, and they particularly enjoy berries and are most often spotted along the East Coast.

Britain’s smallest birds, Goldcrests are naturally shy, spending most of their time in conifer forests but these tiny green and yellow birds can be found at bird tables during winter. They’re resident in the UK all year round and can be spotted across the country.

You may also be lucky enough to spot Bramblings, who typically flock in small groups. They visit the UK during winter and love mealworms. You can spot them by their distinctive orange plumage and screech-like call.

wood pigeon bird

Top tips for spotting wild birds in winter

If you’re using bird feed to help you spot wild birds in winter, make sure you keep feeding the birds throughout the winter, otherwise, they will waste precious energy returning to your bird table or feeder only to find it empty. It’s also important to supply fresh water for bathing and drinking, even when it’s snowy or rainy and to defrost frozen water if it ices over.

Got a question for us? Call us today on 01778 342 665

Happy New Year from Kennedy Wild Bird Feed. This year let’s make it one of the best years yet. A lot of people like to make new year’s resolutions. A resolution can be something you want to change or improve yourself or maybe something you want to achieve by the end of the year.

A common new year’s resolution people like to make is to find a new hobby that will help them improve their way of life.

If you are looking for a hobby to try this year that is fun and healthy then why not try bird feeding.

sparrow birds eating peanuts

Why You Should Start Feeding Birds in 2022

If you aren’t an avid bird watcher or you haven’t fed the birds before then you might be wondering why should I start feeding birds in 2022?

There are so many benefits to bird feeding. Feeding the birds is a great hobby that is affordable and accessible to everyone. If you have a garden or any outdoor space available, then you can feed the birds.

Feeding the birds is a hobby that you can do inside or outside depending on how you plan to do it. If you are looking for a hobby to help, get you outside more than bird feeding and bird watching might be the one for you. Alternatively, if you prefer to stay indoors you can feed birds somewhere that you will be able to see them from the inside of your house and still get to enjoy the view.

Feeding the birds is not only a great hobby that has benefits for you, but it also greatly benefits the birds as well. Birds of course need food to survive but finding it in the wild is not always an easy task. by leaving food out for birds you are helping them get the nutrients they need.

The nutrients and proteins birds need though out the year can change as weather conditions get milder or harsher so be sure to keep up to date on kinds of food the birds in your garden need at certain times of the year.

nuthatch bird

How To Get Started With Bird Feeding in 2022

You don’t need to buy any equipment or fancy bird food when you first start feeding the birds. You can start by simply leaving out bread or other scraps, as long as you check they are safe for birds. Make sure the food is left in a safe place away from predators like on a roof or a high wall and then see if any birds come.

If you notice a lot of birds coming to feed, you can even take up bird watching. Bird watching is another great hobby that you can do easily, and you can do it from the safety and comfort of your own home. for more information read our Guide To Bird Watching At Home.

If you notice birds are starting to take an interest, then you might want to start investing in proper bird feeding equipment. A bird table or feeder is a great way to make sure that the birds that come to your garden are eating in a nice safe place.

If you scatter food on the ground then you might end up attracting other pests, like rats and mice, or attracting predators that will attack the birds. If you place the food high up on a bird table then the bird will be safe from these ground predators.

If you have a bird feeder you can place it near a wall or under a tree. This will not only protect the birds from ground predators but from birds of prey that might try and swoop down and attack them.

When you have a steady stream of birds coming to visit and feed at your garden then you might want to think about buying bird food. Birds need a lot of nutrients to help them survive and the best way to make sure they are getting all these is if you by the find from a bird food specialist.

Here at Kennedy Wild Bird Food, we have a range of bird food that has been specially designed to have everything birds need. Some of the bird food we have includes:

Mixed Birdseed

Mealworms For Birds

Peanuts For Birds

Plain Wild Bird Seeds

Suet For Birds

Sunflower Seeds For Birds

sparrow on feeder

There is a myth that you do not need to feed birds in the colder months as they have all migrated to warmer countries. This myth is not true, and birds still need feeding all you round.

Whilst it’s true a lot of birds do migrate to warmer countries, there are pliantly of birds that stay in the UK and in some cases, like with the robin red breast, birds migrate to the UK for the winter.

If you enjoy feeding the birds and want to continue do so even in winter, then you need to no what bird feed should you use in the colder months?

robin bird in snow

Should I Feed The Birds In Winter?

When the weather gets colder, living conditions can become very difficult for birds and other small creatures. Weather can get very cold, and condition can become treacherous, meaning birds need to be able to find a safe place to stay whilst they can’t fly.

It’s important that you not only provide food for these birds, but also give them a safe place to stay and find shelter. You can do this by providing birds with a safe place to nest. Nest boxes are a great way to help the birds that visit your garden.

Make sure the nest box is high up enough that is safe from predators but no so high it can be knocked down and harm the birds living inside. You need to nail the nest box to a sturdy surface like a stable tree or protected wall.

Birds also need access to water to survive. If you leave water out for birds, then they are more likely to come and visit so that they can drink and bathe themselves. If you have a pond or bird bath in your garden make sure the bird can easily reach it, if not then you can always leave out a bowl or dish of water as long as it is big enough for the bird to bath in.

As the weather gets colder the temperature can drop and as a result your water may freeze over. If this happens birds will not be able to drink or bath in the water. To prevent freezing you can add a tennis ball or anything that floats to the water. The constant agitation of the water should prevent it from freezing fully. You can read other tips for helping garden creatures in cold weather here.

Of course, one of the best things you can do for birds in winter is to leave food out for them. In winter trees and plants do not produce as much food as they usually do and the round can freeze or become very hard making it almost impossible for birds to dig for food.

Robin eating bird food, news advice and blog

What Bird Feed Should You Use In The Colder Months?

If you are planning to feed the birds in the colder months then it’s important you feed them the right kind of food that will help them survive in the colder, harsher weather.

Birds need lots of different nutrients to survive, but this especially true in colder months. When the weather gets bad it can be harder for birds to fly in these poor conditions and flying can be more draining for them. This is why birds need food that can help provide them with a lot of energy to help them fly and make journeys that will be more difficult now that the weather is bad.

The winter months bring other struggles for the birds, particularly when it gets to very cold temperatures. Birds need good fats in their diet that hat they can store this fat for winter and keep warm. Not all fat is good for birds however and if you are planning feeding birds’ fat to help them stay warm you are better off using a bird food specialist and feeing the bird nuts or suet.

Here at Kennedy Wild Bird Food, we have a range of food that is specially designed to help birds by giving them all the nutrients and protein that need to survive. By using a bird food specialist you can be sure that they food they you are feeing the wild birds is healthy and helpful to them and doesn’t contain any nasty or harmful chemicals.

sparrow bird on feeder

At Christmas you tend to end up wit a lot of leftovers by the end. Christmas is a time where we love to gorge of food and treat ourselves to all the luxurious treats they have in store, and sadly a lot of it ends up getting wasted and thrown away.

If you have a lot of left over food from Christmas, but you don’t want to see it go to waste then you can always leave it outside for the birds and other creatures that come to visit your garden, be aware though, there are a lot of food that can cause harm to birds and make them ill. This is what is important that you know what Christmas treats can birds eat?

Here are some of the Christmas treats birds and cannot eat.

robin bird in snow

Birds Can Eat:

There are a lot of foods birds can eat and many of them can be found in your own kitchen cupboards. birds are strong and resilient creatures and that can eat a lot of things you would expect them to.

Some of the food’s birds can eat incudes:

Cheese

If you have left over cheese from Christmas, then you can leave it out for birds.

Bread

Bread is very good for birds and it is perfectly safe for them to eat in small doses. Any crusts or stale bread can be left out for them.

Fat

Birds need fat to survive, especially in winter. birds need to eat good fat so that they can stay warm in the winder. If you have any cooking fat left in your roasting tin after Christmas you can scrape it off and leave it out for birds. birds shouldn’t be given too much shalt however, so bacon fat or salted meat can be harmful to them.

Potatoes

Everybody loves a potato at Christmas dinner. Roast boiled or mashed potatoes are often the star of the Christmas dinner for some people. If you happen to have any left after everyone had finished eating, you can leave them out for birds as potatoes are perfectly fine for birds to eat.

Fruit

Fruit is extremely healthy and good for birds to eat. Fruit contains a lot of good healthy nutrients and is high in the sugar birds need to fly. Birds can eat almost any fruit, include fruit that is damaged or rotten. So, if you find some old fruit that you can’t eat anymore, try leaving it out for the birds.

Pastry

Whilst it’s not the healthiest thing for birds to eat, pastry still contains some of the nutrients they need, and pastry is perfectly safe for them to eat. So, any mince pies that have gone uneaten and stale can be left for birds.

Also remember that although these foods are safe for birds, they might not be safe other animals, including your pets. Make sure to place the food on a high surface like a bird table or the roof so that only birds can get to them.

sparrow birds on bread basket

Birds Can Not Eat:

Although birds are tough and cleaver creatures that have to eat what they can in the wild, there are a few food stuffs that they cannot eat. Be careful when feeding birds scraps as some of the food may be toxic to birds and can cause them some serious harm. some if the foods birds can’t eat include:

Chocolate

Like with most animals’ chocolate is harmful to birds. If birds eat chocolate, it can make them seriously ill so make sure you don’t leave any where they can find it.

Salt

Birds do need some salt to survive, just like we do, but they only need a small amount. Birds will easily find the amount of salt they need out in the wild and if you leave out salty food for them it might end up being to much for them.

Before you leave anything out for them like fat or peanuts, make sure they are not so high in salt that it will harm the bird.

Alcohol

At Christmas time a lot of food contains alcohol so something that might be ok for birds to eat normally might not be if they are soaked in alcohol. It only takes a small about of alcohol to make birds sick and they can easily get alcohol poisoning if they eat alcohol food or take a drink from an alcoholic beverage that has been left outside.

Onions

Foods like onions and garlic can thin the blood and this can be dangerous for birds. Whilst it’s ok to let birds have a little bit of onion, it’s best not to give them to many or they could become ill. After you have done preparing all the veg it’s perfectly safe to leave the ends and peels out for the birds, just keep an eye out for too much onion.

blue tit with popular bird feed of sunflower seeds

 

If you want to feed the birds that visit your garden, then you need to make sure that you are feeding them food that is good and healthy. To ensure this you need to use bird food that is made by a bird food specialist and is designed with the birds’ best interests in mind.

Ring pull click bird peanut feeder

What Kinds Of Bird Food Are There?

Different birds have different requirements and diets, that is why there is a wide variety of food to choose from. Different bird food can help birds with different things, so you need to take this into account when deciding what you want to feed your birds. You will need to consider other things as well, like if you want to attract any particular kind of bird and how you are planning to feed them.

Here at Kennedy Wild Bird Feed, we have a wide range of bird foods that are specially designed to not only be perfectly safe for the birds in your garden to eat but also to help the birds survive and thrive in the wild. Our bird feed includes:

Mixed Birdseed

Our bags of mixed birds seeds are specially made mixes of seeds that are cleverly designed and complied to help birds survive no matter what the conditions against them may be.  

Mealworms For Birds

Here at Kennedy Wild Bird Feed, we are proud to stock mealworms for birds. Plenty of birds eat instincts out in the wild and a lot of them will prefer to eat them when they come looking for food in your garden.

Peanuts For Birds

Peanuts are incredibly healthy and good for the birds that come to your garden. By choosing peanuts for birds you can be sure that the birds you are feeding getting all the nutrients they need to stay healthy and strong. On top of this, peanuts for birds are also full of good, healthy fats and oils and these are vital when it comes to staying warm in the colder months.

Plain Wild Bird Seeds

Here at Kennedy Wild Bird Feed, we have a wide variety of different seeds for you to choose from. Plain Wild Bird Seeds are good, natural seeds that are the perfect food for any bird visiting your garden.

Suet For Birds

Our range of suet products are made from the best ingredients and are the perfect food to leave out for the birds in your garden when the weather starts to get cold. You can feed suet to birds all year round, but suet is especially good for birds in winter as it contains all the good fat they need to build up and store fat for the cold weather.  

Sunflower Seeds For Birds

Sunflower seeds are possibly the healthiest thing you can feed the birds that come to your garden. They have a soft shell that the birds will need to break through, which is great for strengthening their beak. If the birds that come to your garden are little on the small side and don’t have the strength or power to break the shells, then you can buy sunflower hearts. Sunflower hearts are just the meaty insides of the sunflower seed that have all the good proteins and necessary calories that birds need to stay strong and healthy all year round.

sunflower heart seeds

Where Does Bird Food Come From?

Bird food uses all-natural ingredients that are safe for birds to eat. This includes natural foodstuffs like nuts and seeds. All of the ingredients in bird food are checked before use to make sure it is free of any disease, and we make sure only the freshest ingredients are used.

The food is kept as natural as possible, No harmful chemicals or additives are added to the process so that nothing in the bird food will cause the bird any harm. The seeds and nuts are added to a processor that cleans the raw ingredients so that we are left with clean, pure ingredients for our bird food mixes.

The food is then put through a three-step air cleaning system. This system separates the raw bird food from other debris that you might not want in your birdseed mix. This includes things like stems and empty shells as well as small stones and pebbles that have been picked up by mistake.

When all the birdseed has been cleaned and extracted it is packed up, ready to be sold.

sparrow bird on feeder

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