END OF THE YEAR 2011

Depending on your location, bluebirds are flying in mixed flocks and roosting together in existing nestboxes or natural cavities to stay warm.  In Virginia, bluebirds stay as residents.   The last of our dogwood berries were blown off the tips of the branches about a week ago.   This is the time to start making suet in your own kitchen just for bluebirds; it’s good to put out dried and live mealworms, too.  Here is a good recipe for bluebird suet, which I extracted from the Virginia Bluebird Society’s website.  Also check out recipes at the following page:  http://www.sialis.org/suet.htm

Suet For Bluebirds – 1 cup crunchy peanut butter, 1 cup lard, 2 cups quick oats, 2 cups cornmeal, 1 cup flour, 1/3 cup sugar, berries like currants optional.  Mix dry ingredients.  Melt peanut butter & lard together and mix with dry ingredients.  Press into pan, cool, cut into squares and freeze until needed.

My notes:  I think adding soaked currants or cut up soaked raisins or other dried cut up fruit is helpful.  I prefer to crumble up the suet and put it out for the bluebirds and other birds, too, along with live and dried mealworms in an open platform-type feeder or jailhouse mealworm feeder.  A crumbly mixture is easier for the bluebirds to eat.

If you can, keep water available using a birdbath or large dish with a deicing device to keep the water from freezing.  Birds need water year round!

Photo is by Dave Kinneer — used with permission.   Thanks, Dave!

Christine

Snowcap Landing!

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