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  • Clarke Wallace

LOOK WHAT YOU'RE FEEDING 'Em!

Each year about this time – or somewhat earlier - we buy seed for those birds who stay with us all winter. Keeping the metal feeder topped up can surprise you. One moment it’s full, the next almost empty.


Have you ever been curious enough to find out what kind of seed? I hadn’t given it much thought until now. Or even knowing what birds hang around here to see what I’ve got in store for them.


According to the back of the package, there’s oil sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, peanuts, dried raisins, dried cherries. Mineral oil. The more expensive ones will include tree nuts, soy and wheat, among others.


Next. What birds will be attracted to the wonderful meals? You can count on the cardinals, the bright red males drawing close attention. Along with the red-breasted grosbeak, evening grosbeaks, common redpolls (huh?). Black-capped chickadees, dark-eyed juncos. Add to them the gold finches, house finches, purple finches white-breasted nuthatches and red-breasted nuthatches.


The best place for hanging the feeder, I’m told, is nearest bird habitats, such as shrubs and trees.


The package covers its butt by saying birds may or may not be attracted to the food, depending on ‘your geographical location and the season’.


Author’s comment: I have no idea if the seeds I buy draw all these types of birds, Forgotten in its list are the noisy bluejays and common sparrows.


My favorite? The chickadees. They are so darn friendly, settling in the palm of your hand when it’s full of seeds. They look up at you as they peck away, I’ll swear a smile on their cheeky little faces.


By the way, Christmas is this Friday. Have a merry, warm one. C.

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