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Feeding Birds with Suet - A Humane Action

Posted by MaryG | Added on : February 04, 2013 5:47pm | Last edited: February 04, 2013 7:45pm | Viewed 2619 times | 0 Comments


 Feeding Birds with Suet - A Humane Action

What is Suet?

Suet is the fatty tissue that forms around the kidney of a cow. You can usually get it from your local butcher, but in case you can’t you can as well use the lard from your grocery store. However, using pure suet can be a problem as frying it can be quite smelly, so it is better to do it out in the open.

 Making suet for the birds

Suet is usually made into cakes for feeding birds. It is not a difficult task as they can be offered to the birds in several ways. You can do it without a recipe, by just following some guidelines.
 Birds like jays, western bluebirds, warblers, towhees, chickadees, woodpeckers etc. will flock to your yard around the year to enjoy suet treats. However, it is better to feed birds with homemade suet cakes in winter alone as in warmer climates suet tends to melt or easily become rancid. This is particularly true in view of the fact that suet is an excellent food for birds during the fall as well as winter as they require a lot of calories to sustain body heat as also energy levels.

Homemade Suet Cakes

Preparing suet cakes at home for feeding birds is merely a matter of melting down fat to a pourable consistency. If you feel like, you can put in any ingredient that you might choose and pour the whole thing into a mold. The mold’s shape depends on the kind of suet feeder that you decide to use. If you intend to use shortening or lard in the making of these suet cakes, adding the same quantity of peanut butter flour can help preserve the right consistency of suet cakes.


You can add to this warm, pourable mixture cornmeal, raisins, rolled oats, unsalted nuts, bird seed, or anything else that you think will make the birds enjoy. The next step is to pour this suet 'soup' into a mold. Any left-over portions of the ‘soup’ can be kept in a freezer for a couple of months.


The Suet Feeder

You can either make a suet feeder of your own or you can buy one by spending a few bucks. Feeding birds with homemade suet can be done in more than one way. You can place the suet cakes within an onion bag, or bend some wire mesh and keep the suet cakes within or in any number of other ways that you can imagine. However, the most suitable suet feeder by far is the one that is easy to clean as well as protected from the elements.


Other ways to make suet

If you don’t want to make suet cakes all by yourself, you can buy plain but rendered suet cakes from any store dealing in wild bird supplies. Such cakes might be used as it is, without any form of cooking. Another way is to save all your pork and bacon meat drippings in order to cook your own unique suet. Buy vegetable shortening in place of animal fat. And in case you happen to be a vegan birder who’d rather not utilize animal products, feeding birds with vegetable fare is okay and still edible for the birds. And if you don’t know where to buy them, baking supply stores usually stock vegetable shortening.


Feeding birds, a humane act 

Any person who cares enough for these feathery creatures that brightens our days in many ways, doing things like feeding birds and providing them with melted water during winter are very commendable and humane acts. They are also part of creation and as such need as much help as they can get from we human beings at a time when so many species have become extinct or facing extinction due to man’s encroachment into their habitats.




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