Feeding stations for birds and squirrels.
Enjoy watching your feeding station where birds and squirrels meet and enjoy the food you give them. The animals are grateful for the food and would otherwise have to look for it with great effort. As a parent you can support the natural interest of your child in nature and wildlife watching birds and squirrels. An early age is the best time to learn about animals, the different behaviour of the animals and the reasons why they should be protected and treated with respect. A feeding site in the garden or on the balcony is a good idea and offers a great chance to watch birds and squirrels in their own environment at close range. Especially in the winter, we are doing something good for the animals providing them with food that is scarce and hard for them to find in the frozen ground.
When feeding wild animals, there are some points that should be noted. Feeding them correctly is essential for their health.
Basically the feeding site is a good thing throughout the whole of the year. In summer it is not really needed but in winter you should always be sure that it is well stocked. The winter season starts in November and goes through till the end of February. For squirrels and birds the biggest problem is snow and frozen ground. At these times the feeding station will be well visited by your guests.
A feeding station needs to be designed so that the animals cannot walk through the food and soil it with their faeces. This is also the best way of preventing the transmission and spreading of diseases. The food should ideally be stored in a closed container. The feeding station should be designed so that the food is protected from rain, wind and snow but at the same time easily accessible for the birds and squirrels. If the food gets wet it is likely to spoil or to freeze. When designing the Gardigo Bird and Squirrel Bar, we made sure that all these points were met. The food is protected from wind and rain, the animals can reach it easily but they cannot spoil the food by running over it and soiling it with their excrements.
Where should I put the Bird or Squirrel Bar?
Bird feeders should be set up in an open area so that they can be approached by flight and natural enemies, such as cats, can be seen at an early stage. The selected site should be somewhat protected by nearby trees and bushes or under a roof, shielding off wind and rain.
What do I feed?
Basic food for birds is all kinds of seeds, especially sunflower seeds. Many retail stores offer mixtures in the wintertime. We recommend using seeds which are still in their shell. This causes a little more waste and dirt, but it keeps the birds occupied and lets them perch longer at the feeding station. If you want to attract squirrels you will need to add nuts and larger seeds. A piece of apple, some grapes or other fresh fruit, raisins, oatmeal and bran are always welcome delicacy on the menu.
Finches, sparrows and tits prefer seeds and will be a regular visitor on cold winter days. Robbins, hedge sparrows, blackbirds, and thrushes prefer soft food such as fruit, raisins and oatmeal but will also eat seeds if nothing else is available. When feeding fresh fruit it is important to make sure that the food does not spoil and is exchanged regularly. Never feed birds or squirrels with spicy or salty food. Bread is also not recommended as this can bloat and constipated them.
All feeding stations should be cleaned at regular intervals. When cleaning we recommend the use of rubber gloves for hygienic reasons. Only use warm clear water without detergents, as the detergents can be harmful to the birds and the smell like to drive them away.