Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Bird Feeding This Winter - Part III - Suet Takes the Cake

Suet is generally considered the food of choice for woodpeckers and maybe some chickadees. It's been interesting for me to note who has actually been eating it this winter.

The flicker, of course, fits the woodpecker stereotype:

The mockingbird, though, is definitely not an advertised suet lover - however, I only see my resident mocker(s) at either the suet or the water, and it's usually at the suet:

Then there are the "if he likes it so much, maybe I should try it" casual feeders, like this immature white crowned sparrow:

I've noticed cardinals in that last category too.

Of course, I've seen downy woodpeckers and red bellied woodpeckers eating lustily at the suet, too, as well as those pesky starlings. Usually the chickadees seem to prefer the black oil sunflower seeds in the hanging feeders, but sometimes they seem to crave something a little "stronger." Among my favorites feeding at the suet are the Carolina wrens who generally dart in during the late afternoon hours for a quick snack.
Whether suet, sunflower seed, thistle, cracked corn or a mix, the bird feeders have attracted a lot of life and action to the yard this winter. They and their gluttonous following keep me endlessly entertained during the cold months...and I feel satisfied, too, thinking of all the fertilizer they are depositing on the ground and of all the overwintering bugs that they are searching out for their "in-between meal snacks".
I can't imagine my wintertime yard without them.

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