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British Wild Birds need your help now more than ever

British Wild Birds need your help now more than ever

According to research carried out by the Pet food Manufacturers’ Association (PFMA) half of the UK population have an interest in engaging with British wildlife which is great news for the local garden bird population who need our help now more than ever.

Usually our gardens provide an abundance of fruits, seeds and insects for birds, however we’re now in a period known as the Feeding Gap (Spring/late Spring) when natural food supplies are depleted following the winter.  It is also a hectic time for the bird population who are busy feeding to satisfy the demands of their young. Supplementing their feed at this time can be particularly beneficial.

Feeding garden wildlife has become an increasingly popular pastime, with the nation spending an estimated £200 million[1] every year and it’s easy to understand why. According to Mike Toms of the British Trust for Ornithology (BTO) “Feeding the local birds is accessible to everyone even for the urban dweller with a small outside space. The benefits are great. It can give a sense of companionship; it can teach young families about wildlife and caring for their environment, all of this whilst supporting the British wildlife population.”

 

Need some help getting started? Top tips from the experts:

  1. Provide a varied menu. Different birds eat different feeds. Birds with larger bills such as the green finch and the house sparrow can handle larger seedswhilst birds with finer bills, for example the Robin, prefer small seeds.
  2. Give some thought to your feeding stations. Certain species prefer hanging feeders (e.g. Blue Tit and the Great Spotted Woodpecker), whilst others like to feed off the ground (e.g. Robins and Dunnocks). 
  3. Make sure there is fresh water available all year round. As a watch out, never give milk to birds, their gut isn’t designed to digest milk and it can cause serious stomach upsets.

Gardening for wild life can create an inviting and safe place for birds providing a source of natural foods through lawns, shrubs and flower beds. By supplementing their natural feed supplies at the right times of year you will encourage them to keep coming back.

-ENDS-

For more information on feeding wild birds including, feeding tips, what not to feed and hygiene, please visit: www.pfma.org.uk

About PFMA

The Pet Food Manufacturers’ Association (PFMA) is the principal trade body representing the UK pet food industry, its 70 members accounting for over 90% of the market. PFMA aims to be the credible voice of a responsible pet food industry. While striving to achieve a balanced regulatory environment for the production of nutritious and safe food, PFMA also encourages responsible pet ownership working in partnership with relevant pet bodies. It aims to be the main resource for its members, general public and others as well as playing a lead role in forming opinions in Europe through the European Pet Food Federation (FEDIAF). For more information visit www.pfma.org.uk.

Within the membership, PFMA has a dedicated Bird Group, including wild bird feed producers.

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