It’s tummy time! Feeding is an important task to do if we have a pet in our home, including birds! Knowing what type of food source and diet habit for your bird is important to keep them in shape. Cockatiels bird, for example, have a list of choice for their best type of food, or Finch birds with important minerals that need to be contained in their food.
But how about Suet? Have you ever heard about that? If you pet a bird, suet is an important thing to know! Suet is a quick source of heat and energy for birds. It is a high energy formulation of animal fat and other ingredients to attract insect-eating birds. Traditionally, suet has been used as a good substitute for bird’s food source in the cold weather because there will fewer insects for the bird to eat. So suet bird is something important lesson to learn for you, bird lover. Here is some basic habit of suet bird feeding that may help you to know more.
Suet bird feeding habit that you must understand
If you put suet in your backyard, the birds might start to visit you. These guest probably include some type of woodpeckers, chickadees, Eurasian bullfinch, wren, and northern mockingbird. And as a return, they probably will help you back by eating the insects in your garden especially in spring and summer. The type of bird species that will feed on your suet is depended on what type of suet birds you offer, the season, the birds’ range, and the feeder style. So make sure you know exactly what is the preferred bird you want to have in your back yard, their features, and their habit. For example, Wren bird likes to eat small insect and worm while the other birds like to eat seeds.
Basically, It is easy to prepare suet. You only need to refill the mesh bag or any other suet feeders with a suet cake once for a week and never need to scrub it. Just leave it at your yard and you can have it for a year around. Suet cakes are blocks made of suet or thick substitutes, combine with corn, peanut, or dried insect. Make sure your suet cakes is hygiene because it is prone to dangerous bacteria while making it by yourself or directly buying it from a reputable supermarket. Suet is most commonly found as basic cake shapes but is also available with many different types depending on the producer or the feed type for examples in the form of nugget, plugs, shreds, or crumbles.
Usually, the feeding habit of this suet consists of some steps, which are:
1. Make it accessible to eat!
You may want to put the suet reachable or easy to access but the bird, of course. You can put shreds or crumbles on a platform feeder to introduce suet in the beginning as the first experience. You can start placing a suet feeder near the usual feeders where the bird will notice them easily.
2. Where to put
Usually, birds will cling to the back of a tree in search for insect so place your suet near the tree trunk or about 6 feet from the ground.
3. Protect the suet
You may want to choose suet that includes roofs or other solid structure to protect it from the direct exposure from the sun or rain. Keep it fresh and clean as long as you can!
4. Be gentle with you suet cake portion
Put out only enough suet so the birds can consume it before it spoils. You can also freeze the leftovers to keep it fresh until it is needed. Also, take your time for the birds to recognize the new ingredients if you put different recipes of suet with additional seeds or other foods. Let the birds accustomed to the taste before adding more of it.
5. Make your own
Even though there are many types of suet cake you can buy at the store, you actually can make it on your own. Making your own suet bird food is easy and cheaper than the prepared one. It also allows you to decide what kind of ingredients you want to add to the cake depend on the type of birds you want to attract to your backyard. The natural and organic food sources are always healthier and have less risk of unknown side effects, right? There are several ways to make different types of animal fat for suet cakes. Choose the type that is the easiest and preferred for you!
You can melt down the plain suet cake you buy from the store and add more additional ingredients you want, purchase fat beef trimmings from the local butcher or save your bacon and pork meat drippings (caution! some amount of salt can be harmful to the bird, so be careful!). Vegan alert! You can also change the fat with vegetable shortening if you want.
6. Additional ingredients
Some popular and easiest additional ingredients to put into you suet cake include chopped unsalted peanut, dried fruits or unsweetened raisins, insects like worm or cricket, and of course, bird seeds. This is not a strict recipe, though. You can do some experiment and trials to make your preferred suit cake. It’s all up to you!
That’s all suet bird feeding habit you need to understand. From how to prepare, where to put, what type you need to add, until some basic step to make your own suet cake which is way more easy and affordable. Are you interested to have one? Make sure you prepared your suet cake and the platform well to attract our ‘visitors’ in our backyard.
If you don’t have any yard or live in an apartment, you still can have a pet bird who is suitable for your space. Read here to know what these birds are. Or interested with Finches? Read here to know the best type