Fall migration has already begun for some bird species. As birds leave their northern breeding grounds to head south for the winter, the numbers of birds and species of birds that will pass through or arrive in this part of Ontario will increase quite a bit over the next month or two.
If you haven’t been maintaining an active feeder for the summer, now’s the time to get your feeders cleaned and filled. Full feeders – especially a variety of types with a variety of food offerings – attract more migrants, and you’ll see many different birds as they fly south. Natural foods can be less abundant in the fall than in the summer.
Migrating takes a ton of energy (imagine running to your winter getaway instead of taking a plane!), which makes feeding stops crucial to survival. It’s important to choose quality bird food to support birds on their journeys. Many cheaper lower-quality/box store bird food contains wheat and other grains, which birds don’t eat. Lower-quality suet contains cornmeal, which goes moldy and makes it unpalatable to birds.
The Avant-Garden Shop carries high-quality suet and its bird seed doesn’t have these “fillers” and is neonicotinoid-free, all of which provides high-quality energy and nutrition to birds and is also bee friendly.
We carry pole systems that allow you to expand your feeder station by adding additional feeders as your interest grows. These stations can be made taller with extensions, which you can’t do with shepherds’ hooks. In combination with baffles, squirrel-proof feeders, and any advice you need from us, you’re sure to have plenty of birds to enjoy in your yard this fall.
We have 5 Garden Gate episodes on CHEX TV that you may find useful (~3 minutes each).
These 3 episodes with The Avant-Garden Shop’s seed supplier, Mark Bennett of Wild Bird Trading Co., provide some interesting explanations of why the quality of bird seed and suet is important:
Episode 67: Neonicotinoids
Episode 68: Quality Bird Food
Episode 69: Quality Suet And a couple more to get you excited and help you with set-up: Episode 101: Migrating birds at the feeder with Drew Monkman Episode 118: Setting up a squirrel proof bird feeding station