When Is Nesting Season?
Although there is no specifically defined season that birds nest, depending on factors such as weather conditions and bird species having an effect – the majority of birds tend to nest between March and August. The spring/summer months in the UK.
To protect birds during this period, following the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, we mustn’t disturb nesting birds.
Why shouldn’t we disturb nesting birds? It is during the nesting season that birds are at their most vulnerable. Any disturbances to their nest could cause the parent birds to abandon their nest, leaving the young at huge risk.
It is because of these disturbances that feeding birds used to be a winter activity. However, birds need help in those summer months too!
How Can We Feed Birds Without Disturbing Their Nests?
It is vital, in the nesting months that birds, particularly parents birds, maintain high energy levels. Following the breeding season, there are much more birds to feed in the UK and so birds must get the right nutrients.
To keep birds fed without disturbing the nest is important! Place the food away from their nests, that way the birds can visit their food and return it to their young. This is a simple way of ensuring that wildlife such as squirrels or other predatory bird species won’t cause harm to the nest if they also, find the food.
Offering a nest box for birds to nest in, is an easy way of distancing the nest and the food storage.
What To Feed Them
It is necessary during the nesting season that we provide birds with a high energy food source, but also a food source that is acceptable for their young. Large seeds and nuts can cause the young more harm than good – they may choke.
Good food for birds in nesting season includes:
– Sunflower seeds – including black sunflower seeds and sunflower hearts, these seeds are packed with energy and can be eaten quickly by birds.
– Mealworms – weather conditions during nesting season might make live food hard to find. Mealworms are protein-packed.
– Fruit – high in protein and energy, fruit, specifically raisins make a perfect addition to a seed mix for birds during nesting season.
– Mixed bird seeds (without peanuts) – a mixture of seeds can attract a variety of visitors during nesting season so you can be sure you are pleasing different bird breeds. Avoid peanuts in your mix as these could cause choking in the younger birds.
Take into consideration during the nesting season that weather conditions can affect a bird’s ability to naturally gain its energy sources. Live food is recommended, to supplement what they may usually find in the wild.
What To Avoid
There are several ‘usual’ bird feeds that may not be appropriate for those spring and summer months. When feeding during nesting season, it is important to consider:
– Peanuts – as said before, peanuts can cause choking amongst the chicks, who during these months, are an adult bird’s priority.
Read about how to safely feed your birds peanuts here.
– Fat Balls – although a great source of nutrients, avoid fatty foods for your birds in the summer months as they can easily go rancid. It is best to feed your birds with fat balls during the winter months.
Be sure to maintain a supply of bird food during nesting season as they face potential food shortages in the wild.
Get In Touch
Want some more advice on nesting season and what to feed your birds as we approach the summer months? Let us know!
Call: 07778 342665