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05/12/2012 at 06:20

We've had a few visitors to the feeders both here and at work, mainly goldfinches on the sunflower hearts and a few tits on the seed feeders.  Robins, wrens and blackbirds are around too but not visiting the food I'm putting out very much yet.  I've not seen any greenfinches on the feeders yet, nor many chaffinches.  I think there's still plenty of wild food about so they're not having to use our feeders yet, but I also suspect that the rotten spring and summer we had resulted in lots of failed broods and exhausted parents, so numbers may well be down.  It'll be up to us to keep them going throughout the winter and spring to try to raise the numbers again.

05/12/2012 at 06:34

, hello gardener, 

Our farm land close to the large national park.Wild Orchid,Nepenthes, King Cobra,Bear, Barking Deer, Boar, Hyena, Monkey, Squirrel, Rabbit, Turtleandmany species of birds(for instance Asian Emerald Cuckoo, Oriental Scops Owl, Forest Wagtail, Asian Bittern, Rain Quail, Knob-billed Duck, Rosy Starling, Black-headed Ibis, Baillon's Crake, Eastern Curlew, Gadwall) grow up and lives inside the area.

Any farmerare complaining that the wild animals have been plundred fields and destroying crops.Now the problem here is the fact, that the illegal trading is enormous rising up.

Sure, your birds come back soon. Maybe they have enough because of a good fall weather in your area. If they hungry, will come back to you...Save the birds...Best luck and regards, ThaiGer.

"To know what we know, and know what we do not know, that is understanding."(Confucius)  Eco Thai German Farmfarmersvoice

05/12/2012 at 13:35

After comments I think on this thread about not putting fat balls out in netting I bought 2 filled coconut shells thinking that when empty I may be able to fill them myself. I have one of those feeders with hooks for fat balls so I thoight they would be a good alternative. Today the blackbirds have arrived. They seemed very thirst and were at the bird fountain.

I to am going to try that trick for the ground feeders, Thing is i have just taken 2 old baskets to dump as the bottoms had gone, they would have been ideal. Will look in store to see what else I have.

06/12/2012 at 10:53

I agree with Steve - the most effective foods I have found are sunflower hearts and dried mealworms.  I started putting these out early last year, together with peanuts and suet balls, plus suet granules on the floor, and the amount of birds in my garden has really increased this year.  I've stopped using any other food as the birds seem to avoid the mixed foods in favour of the sunflower hearts.  I have found that the goldfinch even seem to prefer the sunflower hearts to nyger seed, so I have stopped putting that out too.  Blackbirds have arrived this week after a very long absence from the garden. I've had blue and great tits all year (I had bluebirds nesting in the garden and all chicks survived luckily considering the weather), chaffinch, greenfinch and goldfinch - all up in numbers from last year.  I don't think any of my neighbours feed the birds, so it could be that I am the only food around and that is why I am seeing so many?  I also have around 50 to 60 starlings which I would really like a break from, so I am hoping they migrate any day now...

06/12/2012 at 11:36

PS.  Buying in bulk on-line really helps with the cost of sunflower seeds and mealworms.  I buy from eBay - 6kg of mealworms (an absolutely huge bag probably up to your knee if it was on the floor) for £50 and 22.5kg of sunflower seeds (again, a huge bag, nearly up to the waist) for £35.  They then last a good couple of months with pretty industrial levels of feeding - probably three or four months with normal levels of feeding.  Buying in bulk also helped me to afford to be able to feed the hedgehogs too this year and I had lots of them too which was absolutely lovely.

06/12/2012 at 13:36

The birds are back now,  lots of starlings, blue tits, blackbirds, robin, sparrows.  All feeding today, put food out early this morning and it had all gone by lunchtime.  I was getting quite worried and did not know why they were boycotting me.  Had to throw the peanuts away though cos had gone mouldy. 

I have a couple of apples that are past their best and thought about putting them out, do I cut them up or just put it on the birdtable whole.

06/12/2012 at 13:47

Blackbirds love apples. I cut some into quarters for entertainment (hopping around with them on their beaks,) some I chop up. Remember though blackbirds are ground feeders so apple needs to be on ground. Wood pigeons will leave apple alone.

06/12/2012 at 15:12

Hi Lavender Lady - glad to hear your birds are back at last.  Blackbirds love chopped apple and have lately discovered how much they love pears that are past their best too.  Today I made mince pies and everything enjoyed the left over scraps of uncooked pastry I put out. 

06/12/2012 at 17:13

I've also found that the goldfinches prefer the sunflower hearts over the nyger seed - and can be quite aggressive defending the feeder!  Poor old chaffinches are still trying to work out how(1) to fend off an attacking goldfinch and (2) how to hang on to the feeder to get at the seeds if they do!    It's only a matter of time . . .

Re apples for the blackbirds and thrushes - I throw them on the ground, and slightly crush them with my food.  Blackbirds will then find it easier to get at the flesh (it doesn't roll away!).  They and the thrushes stripped my pyracantha in less than a week - and I can't produce more of those berries to order.  So apples it has to be.

06/12/2012 at 20:15

the blackbirds are back or where they there and hiding?I can hear them clucking and now they are darting about the lawn again....mystery.

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