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Food for our Feathered Friends

Posted by Pat | Added on : March 04, 2013 2:59pm | Last edited: March 04, 2013 3:09pm | Viewed 2883 times | 0 Comments


Food for our Feathered Friends

by Pat Mickler - Jacksonville, Florida

My husband and I began feeding birds many years ago. Living on two acres in North Florida, with lots of trees and a fairly moderate winter, our bird population never leaves. We started with one feeder, which we quickly discovered the birds were ‘sharing’ with the squirrels. To ensure our birds had a year round supply of food, we also had to set up a separate squirrel feeding station!


North Florida has a diverse bird population including cardinals, blue jays, wrens, chickadees, titmouse, doves, mockingbirds and hummingbirds to name a few. We are feeding all these birds right now, in

 addition to the pileated and snowy woodpeckers.
A few years ago, a chickadee made its nest in a potted plant on our front porch.  We checked the nest every day, anxiously waiting on the eggs to hatch.  Imagine our delight, when late one afternoon we were there to watch mama chickadee coax her babies out of the nest for us to see!!  Since then, we have seen multiple chickadees use this same potted plant for their nest.
Feeding birds has become a daily activity for my husband.  We have now set up feeding stations at several places on our property.  We’ve expanded our types of feed to include regular birdseed, sunflower seed, safflower seed, and several types of suet. We also have hummingbird feeders set up
at different locations so that when we walk through the gardens, we have several opportunities to view our feathered friends feasting on their favorite food!
To attract more birds, we created a flower garden of multiple colors, sizes and heights.  For the hummingbirds, we have tubular flowers to ensure a good nectar source.  We also have sunflowers to provide a natural food source to feed the birds.  Our garden is also geared to attracting butterflies and bees.  

We have a wooded lot as part of our property.  The trees are a sanctuary for the birds and squirrels.  Due to our varied wildlife, we also have hawks and owls.  For additional security for our birds, butterflies and bees, we have bird houses, butterfly houses and a bee house.  We also have a bat house which is available for our evening bats.
Feeding birds and other wildlife is highly addictive if you are a nature lover!  Spring is arriving in North Florida and our yard is full of robins, some of which may stay around through the summer.  The chickadees and titmouse are at my window feeder so I can observe them as I am in the kitchen.  I also have a hummingbird feeder in the window view which was just visited by our first hummingbird of the season!
We look forward to having our morning coffee
on the deck as we watch the birds feed and the butterflies wake up to the warm morning sun.  It’s a beautiful day in North Florida!!



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