My two suet feeders have been getting more and more attention since the weather got cold. They were quite popular this week with a few inches of snow on the ground and nothing much to eat except for my feeders and the seeds I scattered. I saw nuthatches, downy woodpeckers, red bellied woodpeckers, sparrows, chickadees, titmice and wrens squeezing in and out of the suet cages.
Suet is an inexpensive way to feed birds. You can buy it readily for as little as a dollar a cake. My birds seem to prefer the peanut infused suet, but they like berries as well.
Suet is a high energy formulation of animal fat and other ingredients to attract birds whose metabolisms are high. Suet has traditionally been used as a good substitute for the insects that birds usually feed upon, but are largely unavailable in cold weather. It’s a quick source of energy.
You can simply attach a suet cake to the side of a tree – if you don’t have squirrels. But squirrels will take an entire cake down in a matter of hours. I have to put my suet cakes in a cage on a pole with a bevel to keep the free-loading rodents from eating everything. Then, in a few months, I have the same problem with grackles. They come and come until they have pecked away every tidbit. I haven’t figured that problem out yet, but for now, there are no grackles and most all my backyard birds love to eat suet.
So suet time it is.