Tuesday, 5 January 2010

Feeding the birds

Exeter appears to be one of the few places in England that hasn't yet had snow this winter, but it is still freezing cold at Frog End. The ponds have been covered in a layer of ice since before Christmas - much thicker than when they last froze in early February 2009.

During such cold weather it's vitally important to put out food and water for the birds and here in Devon farmers have been given bird food to put out to feed the rare cirl buntings.

Upon returning to Exeter at New Year I was surprised to find that our bird feeders weren't empty, but upon closer examination I found that much of the food had frozen inside the feeders. My attempts to clean them out have achieved very little. Instead I've resorted to putting food down on the brick path beside the main pond. No doubt I'll be annoyed when a million little grasses emerge in the gaps between the bricks in the Spring, but for now the arrangement seems to be suiting the birds.

6 comments:

holdingmoments said...

It's certainly tough for them when the weather is like this.
I spent nearly an hour this morning clearing last nights snow from the shrubs and areas of grass. Topping up feeders, putting seed, cheese, apples and fruit down, and fresh water.
As I stepped back inside it was worth all the effort to see the birds come flocking down.
My lawn will probably resemble a meadow come the spring lol

JOHNSON, Cotswold Hills, England. said...

I'm sure that, like us in the Cotswolds, you have plenty of snow now!

Since the cold weather started before Christmas, we have had bramblings regularly feeding at our bird table.

I'm looking forward to regularly visiting this blog as well as your other ones.

Johnson

Helen said...

Thanks Johnson. We do indeed have snow down here today. Lucky you with the bramblings.

Keith, may I ask what feeds upon the apples? Our blackbirds are rather partial to grapes, but I hadn't thought of putting apples out.

holdingmoments said...

Hiya Helen. I usually get a few apples, cut them in half, and just scatter them on the grass. The Blackbirds enjoy them along with Starlings. Redwing and Fieldfare are partial to apple too, but I've yet to attract any to my garden.

Scriptor Senex said...

I've never thought to put apples out. What a good idea. Mind you, I supect there are still a few under the apple tree if the blackbird knows where to hunt for them.

ADRIAN said...

Helen Two weeks ago I had a kilo of wild bird seed and a kilo of meal worms. They have scoffed the lot. Mainly Robins, Rooks and Mallard. Sad but true, survival of the fittest.