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Useful Tips and Products for Feeding Wild Birds this Autumn

Birds at FeederAutumn is a time of great anticipation for those who feed and watch birds, and surprising sightings are not limited to remote locales – a Snowy Owl once spent a few hours on the roof of my childhood home in the Bronx, and I’ve counted over 200 species on the grounds of the Bronx Zoo.  Resident birds begin to feed ravenously in preparation for the lean times ahead, and different northern migrants appear each week.  Today I’d like to highlight some foods and feeders that will help ensure that you see all there is to be seen in the coming months.

Mess-Free Suet

Some of the most interesting new products are those formulated to attract specific types of birds.  I’m particularly enthused about Suet to Go Pellets, which provide the benefits of a vital cold weather bird food without the mess of trimming fat from meat (hopefully you are not buying too much fat-laden meat anyway!).

Suet Pellets are packaged with different “extras’ such as freeze-dried insects, berries and raisins, all of which increases their attractiveness to woodpeckers, nuthatches, chickadees and a host of other protein-lovers.  Unique, colorful pellet feeders simplify their use.

Larger Birds and Mammals

Peanuts appeal to animals as diverse as Blue Jays, Grackles and Flying Squirrels, especially when fat and protein needs soar as winter sets in.  Shelled Peanuts are useful for situations where cleanup is difficult or impossible.

If you enjoy feeding Gray or Red Squirrels, or their amusing nocturnal relatives the Flying Squirrels, please check out our extensive line of small mammal foods and feeders.  If you are a “purist” who does not enjoy feeding these amusing but overbearing little fellows, you might wish to consider our squirrel-proof feeders or animal traps.

Finches and Smaller Birds

Goldfinches and other small birds are often very cautious, and likely to be out-competed by more aggressive species. Thistle-Blend Foods will help attract them, especially if offered in a feeder designed to dispense tiny food items and exclude larger birds.

Other Species-Specific Foods

Other specially formulated diets may be helpful if wish to try your luck at luring some of your favorite wild birds.  Please check out our foods for doves, quail, woodpeckers and chikadees, Bluebirds and other insect specialists and Cardinals.

Further Reading

Learn more about bird feeding and how to find the best birding sites in the USA and abroad here.

Great bird-watching videos.


About Frank Indiviglio

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I believe that I was born with an intense interest in animals, as neither I nor any of my family can recall a time when I was not fascinated by creatures large and small. One might imagine this to be an unfortunate set of circumstances for a person born and raised in the Bronx, but, in actuality, quite the opposite was true. Most importantly, my family encouraged both my interest and the extensive menagerie that sprung from it. My mother and grandmother somehow found ways to cope with the skunks, flying squirrels, octopus, caimans and countless other odd creatures that routinely arrived un-announced at our front door. Assisting in hand-feeding hatchling praying mantises and in eradicating hoards of mosquitoes (I once thought I had discovered “fresh-water brine shrimp” and stocked my tanks with thousands of mosquito larvae!) became second nature to them. My mother went on to become a serious naturalist, and has helped thousands learn about wildlife in her 16 years as a volunteer at the Bronx Zoo. My grandfather actively conspired in my zoo-buildings efforts, regularly appearing with chipmunks, boa constrictors, turtles rescued from the Fulton Fish Market and, especially, unusual marine creatures. It was his passion for seahorses that led me to write a book about them years later. Thank you very much, for a complete biography of my experience click here.
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