Starting with bird feeders

Bronze Mannikin on a bird feeder
Bronze Mannikin on a bird feeder

If you want to attract more birds to your garden, then a bird feeder is the quick and easy way to do it. Bird feeders come in many shapes and sizes and are fairly cheap. The most common type of feeder is one that you place seed in and the birds feed through openings at the bottom. I recommend this type of feeder as a starting point, but my recommendation does come with one warning. Once the birds have found your feeder, they can go through plenty of seed in a day.

Where should I buy bird seed?

When buying seed for a feeder you should buy it from a hardware store, or larger pet shop, and preferably by a bag of 10 kg. This is far more cost effective. The most expensive bags of seed are those found in supermarkets, and I strongly recommend that you do not buy there. So where do you place your new feeder. There are a few points to consider. It should be placed where you can easily see it, you should be able to access it easily to top up the seed and there should be suitable perches for the birds to land on nearby. Seed feeders can be placed close to your house, as the birds will quickly overcome their shyness in order to get a free meal.

How will birds find my feeder?

People often wonder if any birds will find their feeder and you will soon find out that they do find it rather quickly. You must just understand what type of birds occur in your area and what type of food they eat. There are seed-eating birds across South Africa, which is why I suggest you start with one of these seed feeders. The style shown above is commonly available and is a good choice although it tends to suit smaller birds such as weavers, sparrows and finches.

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