About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

What you need to do right now to help birds survive the winter

It’s hard to believe but birds are preparing for winter right now. They are growing new feathers, choosing the best winter feeding grounds, or bulking up to fly south.
More Colorful Birds – The best way to help birds develop brighter, stronger plumage is to create a habitat with lots food high in fat in protein in the fall. Most backyard birds go through only one full molt a year at the end of summer. They replace their tired old feathers with a new set that will last through the next winter, spring, and summer. Feathers are made of more than 90% protein, primarily keratins, so every molting bird needs extra proteins to grow strong feathers for proper flight and effective insulation.

Variety of Food - Regardless of the season, the bird species you attract is determined primarily by the seeds you offer. To provide the most beneficial foods to meet birds' nutritional needs, the birds in Michigan should be fed fresh Sunflower, Peanuts, White Proso Millet, Safflower, Nyjer® Thistle, nectar, mealworms, or suet. Wild Birds Unlimited guarantees whatever seed, seed cake, or suet you choose from our store, it will be fresh and a healthy choice for our local birds.

Territories are forming - Birds are staking out their winter territories right now. Young birds like chickadees and titmice find new territories to hook up with other young birds at the end of summer and join local adults to form winter flocks. If you are feeding a good birdseed blend you will attract a lot of birds that will remain in the same general area for the rest of their adult lives.  

Personal Experience - I have noticed that the longer I feed, the more birds I get passing through in the spring and fall. Each year it’s exciting to see new faces mixed in with my regular visitors during migration. I always make sure I have fresh water, food, and shelter to make their journey a little easier. A recent study found that migratory birds are finding fewer areas to use as their rest stops. Your yard could be a lifesaver!
Related Articles:
What seed is best for attracting the colorful birds? http://goo.gl/SAA35
What are the differences between the Wild Birds Unlimited seed blends? http://goo.gl/lF0rr
What seeds do wild birds eat? http://goo.gl/MjUCA
When should I feed the birds? http://goo.gl/IvocS

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