|Suet Feeder - for the birds!|
To all the Whimsical Woods loyal gnome blog readers, a very Happy New Year, 2012. It surely will be a year of changes and politics. That is something we do not read about in the life of gnomes. They have a vocal leader in the clan - a king, who has a queen. Likely a wise elder couple who have earned great respect over the years. How different!
Although our winter of 2011- 2012 seems to be very mild so far, the winter feeding of the little birds must continue. A favorite here in the northern cooler climate is suet made from real animal fat, or in my case, lard. Here at Whimsical Woods, I prefer to make my own from scratch. I can make it to my liking much better than the cheap corn based cakes available in stores. You can find the lard at various bulk food/restaurant stores (Cash & Carry, Smart & Final, etc.) It is about $1.00 a pound in bulk. I buy a 30 lb. bucket for about $35, which will last a full season. The birds love the protein and energy from the suet feeders.
When the snow piles up on the ground, the winter birds will need your suet feeder and ice free water. Our gnome friends to their best to help, but appreciate human efforts.
The photo is a suet feeder I make and sell at the Sequim Open Aire Market, craft shows and mail order. Commercial green suet cages work, but don’t look as natural and require the use of store bought packaged suet.
Suet Recipe - simple ingredients
1 lb. soft lard
1/4 cup sugar, brown or white
1/8 cup ordinary beach sand
1/4 cup old bread crumbs
8 cups of good quality bird seed mix*
1/2 cup flour (white or whole wheat)*
Mix all and let sit in a cool place for a day, then feed the birds! Suet filled pine cones also work great!
*Note: Add more or less to thicken the mix. Optional: add natural chunky peanut butter.