NH winters can be long and challenging with its ice, snow and wind for birds that don’t migrate. Bird feeding stations are one of the ways we can help support our feathered neighbors. But it’s important to maintain them to ensure adequate and safe supplies.
Here are some simple ideas to help keep your feeding stations available, appropriate and safe for your avian visitors.
1. Most importantly, provide a water source. Birds don’t have saliva, so they need a water source to help digest their food. Make sure you clean the water several times a week to keep it bacteria free. If you don’t have a heater, you can replace it in the morning and later in the day.
2. Clear off accumulation of snow and ice and make sure openings are clear. Take out frozen or wet seeds as these can become moldy and cause infections in the birds.
3. Replenish seeds frequently. During long winter nights, birds expend more energy to stay warm and need energy rich foods. With less daylight hours, they have a shorter time to search for available food sources.
4. Clean snow and ice from the ground areas around feeders. Ground feeders like cardinals, doves, grosbeaks, sparrows and juncos like to eat the fallen seeds.
5. Make sure feeders are not broken or damaged in order to keep birds safe from harm.
If you love to watch the birds, providing for them appropriately can bring a plethora of opportunities for enjoyment and entertainment in the long months ahead. A local resource is Steve White, a Birding Expert and Business owner of Wild Bird Depot in Gilford.
For more information:
Don't Forget Water for the Birds in Winter
How to Maintain Your Bird Feeders in Cold Weather