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Remember the birds.

Try to keep your feeders full in this cold weather, and especially the water bowls. My garden tap is frozen solid, so i'm carrying warm water from the kitchen to fill them, after knocking the ice out first.
Sunny Dundee


  • Same here @Balgay.Hill … we’re thawing out the birdbath every morning, topping up the feeders … also putting out extra kitchen scraps in the morning for the ground feeders too. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 23,800
    I expect most of us are feeding our birds. Mine are getting through fat balls and sunflower seeds at a tremendous rate.
    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,791
    I use a little tray instead of trying to keep the pond defrosted.
    What I have now is a collection of 'ice frisbees' as they need emptying so often  :)

    I keep my outdoor tap insulated @Balgay.Hill, and switched off, but there's a length of hose to reach the main hose housing, and I forgot to do the other end so the spray head was frozen. Had to tuck that in behind the storage box and covered as well. Hopefully it'll defrost without any damage next week.  
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • LunarSeaLunarSea Posts: 1,858
    Same here @Balgay.Hill … we’re thawing out the birdbath every morning,

    I empty our birdbath every evening and fill a bucket, stored next to the radiator, ready for my morning foray outside in my PJ's. I then have to top up from the kettle throughout the day. Like @Busy-Lizzie I'm going through suet balls & sunflower hearts like nobody's business. The latter cost me £45 for a 20 kilo sack! But hey, you can't take it with you.

    Clay soil - Cheshire/Derbyshire border

    I play with plants and soil and sometimes it's successful

  • Balgay.HillBalgay.Hill Posts: 1,085
    Same as most other folks. It's the fats and protein they are going for.
    Suet balls, sunflower hearts and mealworms.
    The water is the main thing though, as there are no natural sources during this deep freeze.
    Sunny Dundee
  • wild edgeswild edges Posts: 10,441
    There's a stream flowing nicely only a few hundred yards from here but the birds still crowd the bird bath for a drink. They fly as little as possible in this cold I think.
    We're up to 12 blackbirds now and they can really put away the food. I'm trickle feeding them the last of the stored apples from my trees too.
    If you can keep your head, while those around you are losing theirs, you may not have grasped the seriousness of the situation.
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,008
    No blackbirds at our feeders but I see plenty flitting about in the hedgerows around us.  

    Our regular visitors are getting thru mixed bird seed at 4 times the usual rate plus the fat balls and fat blocks with seeds and meal worms respectively.   We have a large pond plus assorted bowls and pots of water about the garden and the one by the feeders is replenished daily when frozen but I only ever see a few sparrows sipping.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • AuntyRachAuntyRach Posts: 5,255
    edited December 2022
    My laziness in not clearing all the windfall apples this year is benefiting the birds no end. I have never seen so many in my garden! Mostly blackbirds, Mistle Thrushes and some smaller birds, but the magpies bomb in every now and then. I put out a new fat ball most days and pour warm water in the bird bath. Today, I had a bit of bacon rind and the trimmings from the edge of a cake so I mixed that with a handful of bird feed and scattered amongst the apples. I’m pretty sure it will all be eaten up so nothing left for any undesirable creatures. 
    My garden and I live in South Wales. 
  • CatDouchCatDouch Posts: 478
    Like @wild edges  I’m using my precious stored apples for the blackbirds in this cold weather, they love them and I think they need them more than us, although my husband won’t agree when there is a lack of apple pie!  In normal weather I normally get through a whole feeder of sunflower hearts per day and it’s pretty similar at the moment but I’m putting extra sunflower hearts on the ground along with bread crumbs and the apples.  Everything is hoovered up before any undesirables appear later (rats!).  

    Today we had a flock of 10 Long Tailed Tits, such pretty little balls of fluff, not seen too often in my garden.  My list of birds today apart from the LT tits was 5 Robins, 4 Blackbirds, 2 Nuthatch, 1 Marsh Tit, 2 Great Spotted Woodpeckers, 4 Dunnocks, 1 Wren, 6 Coal Tits, 6 Blue Tits, 5 Great Tits, 8 Goldfinches, 5 Greenfinches, 3 Chaffinches, 2 Siskins. I report my weekly findings to the British Trust for Ornithology so am used to keep a daily count! 
    South Devon 
  • Wow that's a good collection of birds to spot @CDouch! My garden is nearly always bird free - I've started getting a daily robin about 6 weeks ago which filled me with joy but this last couple of weeks have seen blackbirds and starlings too. I was initially pleased but they're scaring off my robin and nicking all his food. I don't really begrudge them, just wish they would share!
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