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Gifts That Benefit Nature

With the holidays just around the corner, we are all feeling festive, shopping for our loved ones and spending time at home. When thinking of the nature lovers in your life, there are many gifts we can give that also benefit nature during these cold winter months. There are a few easy steps we can take to do our part to ensure our feathered (and furry) friends survive the toughest months of the year.

Feeding our backyard birds during the cold winter months can be particularly beneficial.  When our temperatures drop and food is scarce, our birds appreciate any extra help they can get. Providing feeders and seed is an easy way to do this, and offering a seed blend, such as Featherfields Feast (includes black oil sunflower seeds, safflower, millet and peanuts) will appeal to the variety of birds that you may see at your feeder. Suet cakes or blocks (made of a fat and seed/nut mixture) provide essential energy for birds in cold temperatures. Woodpeckers, chickadees and nuthatches particularly enjoy suet.

Another extremely important way we can help is by providing a water source when it is scarce. Birds and other small backyard animals need hydration to survive, but finding it when the temperatures drop and freeze can be impossible.  Providing water with a heat source is a great way to do this.

Often birdhouses, which are traditionally used in the spring for nesting, may be inhabited by birds throughout the winter months to roost or take cover during extreme weather. Birds often use tree cavities and thick brush or foliage, but leaving bird houses up year round will give birds an opportunity to use them as shelter until the temperatures rise.

By providing essential food and water (and wonderful holiday gifts), we can all help birds and small animals survive the harsh winter conditions and enjoy the pleasure of watching them thrive in your backyard.


Ashley Satchell, owner, Featherfields


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