Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Feeding Birds in Winter

We recently moved to a new house. While the inside of the house is great, I was concerned that the backyard had no signs of life. No birds outside singing in the morning. No squirrels running through the trees. Nothing. Not even insects. My lifeless yard made me antsy. Was there no sign of life because a predator is hiding in some not so distance trees, was there a pollutant causing all the wildlife to die, or was there a shortage of food for the animals?

To bring life and energy back into my backyard, Little BBQ and I made some bird food for the birds. Since it is winter time here, we took wild bird seed mix from the store and mixed it with peanut butter because the birds need the extra fat during winter time. Then, we placed the food inside orange peels. Finally, we set the food outside and waited.

…and waited

…and waited some more.

Weeks went by and still no signs of life. Was our backyard cursed? Had all the animals in the area died? I was nervous. Finally after 4 weeks some life finally began to appear. First we had a small bird.

Then we got a very small squirrel.

And finally lots more birds.

Little BBQ’s new job is make new bird food whenever the old food runs out. We also practice taking pictures of the animals. Little BBQ is learning to focus a camera. We also make observations about the animals. From watching the animals we have learned about sharing. The animals take only what they need. They do not hoard. They seem to have faith that another food source will pop up if they need it. Everything in our yard seems more harmonious. In the morning there is a flutter of activity from the early morning birds. During lunch time a little squirrel makes his presence known. Feeding the animals has provided us with a fun and educational wintertime activity.

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