March is an exciting time in the bird world – birdwatchers up and down the country are out and about clutching binoculars, spotting this year’s new migrants.
Many birds are arriving now for summer in our gardens – or just passing through for a snack as they make their way home. Our bird populations will change a bit now, so make a note of what you see and tell the British Trust for Ornithology or the RSPB via their websites. Say goodbye to buntings and blackcaps and hello to house martins and warblers! I’ll certainly be keeping a close eye on what’s about in mine and my neighbours’ gardens.
To entice in a whole range of birds I’m putting out a hefty selection of feeds now, trying to cover all bases! Our birds face all sorts of challenges, so don’t think that they only need food in winter. They’ll get used to your garden and, when shortages occur at any time, be more inclined to pop to your plot for a feed.
High energy is key – set out sultanas, oatmeal and lots of different seed mixes, sunflower seeds, grated cheese and mealworms, too. Avoid peanuts, fat and bread right now, which can be harmful to baby chicks. It’s not all about the food – I’m putting out lashings of water regularly. High on the list, though, is being mindful that birds need good access to insects, rain cover and nesting shelter. That means I’m off on a trip to buy more plants – any excuse!
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