Why Do Birds Eat Suet?
Birds eat a myriad of food items, and suet is one such food that birds love to feast on again and again. Whenever and wherever birds find this delicious food, they just can’t resist dining in. So, why do birds eat suet, and what makes suet so special to them?
Birds love consuming suet as it contains the same ingredients they usually find in wild food. By consuming suet, birds gain lots of energy to fly for an extended duration. They ingest beef fat found in suet cake and fat balls to stay healthy and warm to survive the cold nights in winter.
Anyway, below we have discussed some other mesmerizing factors regarding this exceptional bird food that you may find worthy of giving a read. Hence, buckle up, and let’s dive into this article.
What Actually Is Suet?
Suet is, in essence, a raw, robust fat of beef or mutton found around the loins and kidneys. But the suet cakes available in the market are manufactured from rendered animal fat.
These are mixed with other essential ingredients to provide birds with the required vitamins, fats, and minerals. This food is considered the most nutritious and popular bird food that many avian experts use to lure a wide variety of birdies.
Many insect-eating birds consume this food as an alternative source to insects. For your information, they don’t find insects in the winter, and as a solution, they eat suet to gain energy and stay healthy during this season.
Why Do Birds Love Consuming Suet?
As you know, birds go through hard times during winter and suffer from scarcity. Hence, as an alternative food source to insects, many wild birds consume suet to get the nutrition and calories they usually get from insects.
Apart from that, they find suet an excellent source of heat and energy, which they need to stay warm and healthy during winter. In short, suet is, to them, one of the sought-after food sources they need to survive.
Which Birds Do Enjoy Eating Suet?
Suet can be the spotlight in your garden when it is about attracting many wild birds. By placing suet in the feeders, you can lure:
- Brown creeper
- Eurasian bullfinch
- American robin
- Various corvids and more.
How To Prepare The Suet At Home
If you don’t wanna opt for purchasing the best suet cakes or balls, instead, you prefer making your own suet cakes at home. Below, we have disclosed some promising steps to follow to prepare your own suet cakes comfortably.
#Prepare The Fat:
First, you need to cut the animal fat; you can choose beef, lamb, or pork. Now you need to grind up animal fat using your meat grinder. But before moving on, you need to ensure that the fat doesn’t contain any tissue or bone.
#Heat The Fat:
Now it’s liquefying time; you need to render the fat on low heat to liquefy it. For that, grab a pot, place the fat inside the pot and start heating the pot on low heat until the fat melts down completely.
#Strain The Fat:
Hereafter, you should strain the fat to remove residues and impurities that it may contain. And to do that, you can utilize a fine mesh strainer or a clean cheesecloth.
You need to strain the fat a couple of times and may need to reheat it while following the straining process because the fat can solidify when it gets cold.
#Mix Additional Ingredients:
This step is optional; you can either follow it or avoid it. If you choose to apply this method, you can add some mouth-watering ingredients to your suet.
For instance, you can mix the grease with peanut butter, cornmeal, flour, nuts, dried fruits, sunflower seeds, mealworms, or any other insects you prefer to make your suet lavish to those wild birdies.
That’s how easy it is to prepare your own suet at home; we hope you find this recipe useful. Now, let’s talk about how you should serve the suet to backyard birds.
How To Serve Suet To Wild Birds
The easiest way you can follow for serving suet is to smear the suet cakes on the trees’ back. It will help birds access the suet while perching on the tree branches. However, this method will also allow pets to steal suet cakes.
So, to avert this problem, you can use a suet feeder. A suet feeder will block access for pests while allowing birds to eat suet with utmost comfort.
However, while choosing a suet feeder, make sure it is crafted from cedar wood and features a rust-resistant mesh cage. Also, ensure that your preferred feeder offers an easy hanging function and suet dispensing facility.
Additional Steps To Follow To Attract More Birds With Suet
To attract a wider variety of bird species to your yards, here are some steps you can follow. So, let’s read this section thoroughly.
- First, choose a feeder that provides easy access to birds. For example, if you have a platform feeder, you can put some shreds or crumbles to help birds get suet easily.
- Try to select suet feeders with roofs or more solid structures to protect suet from the harshest sun and rain and to extend the suet’s lifespan.
- You need to use only fresh suet and regularly monitor the suet quality. If you find any rotten or spoiled suet, you should remove it immediately.
- Try to put enough suet in the feeders and make sure birds shouldn’t spoil suet before consuming. Also, refrigerate unused suet portions for later use.
- To lure more birds, you need to add a variety of suet mixed with different ingredients. And try to place that suet in separate feeders.
- Lastly, you can use baffles to keep squirrels and other pests from accessing the suets and make sure birds don’t need to compete with them to get food.
Birds love to consume suet, and this food is a popular item that many bird watchers prefer to add to their backyard. By adding this food source, they can attract various wild birdies during fall and winter.
Hence, that’s all for this content; we hope you have enjoyed this one too—best wishes for your next birding trip. Keep in touch with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest to get the latest articles.
Image Source: istockphoto.com