Monday, November 14, 2011
When Birds Share the Feeder
Anyone who has ever fed birds has likely provided food to a host of other types of creatures. An uninvited squirrel can empty a bird feeder quickly and scare away its intended avian visitors. If only we could just hang a bright, shiny sign on our feeders that says "BIRDS ONLY"...
Of course, different people have different attitudes towards bird feeding and while some recoil when a squirrel partakes in the feeding, others welcome critters of both feather and fur. After all, finding food in winter is difficult for all animals, not just birds. And despite our greatest efforts to deter them,nothing seems to stop determined animals from getting the seed they want.
Here in Vermont, we need to be especially vigilant, as bears can be both a nuisance and a potential threat to safety and property. In areas where bears are present, feeders should not be hung until prolonged cold has sent the bears into hibernation. Other unwelcome visitors, like hawks, will readily prey on the very birds you are trying to help.
What different non-avian creatures have visited your feeder? And how do you feel about feeding creatures of all shapes and sizes?
Posted by North Branch Nature Center at 5:19 AM