Help Your Winter Visitors

For many years we had very few birds in the winter. About ten years ago my wife and I decided to make the feeding area a little more private and protected from the wind and it has paid off wonderfully. The birds in the photos are mostly Red Poles from the Arctic that visit Maine in the winter and return north in the spring to nest. In addition to Red Poles, we have a flock of about two dozen Mourning Doves that winter in our woods, six Blue jays that harass everything, a flock of Chickadees and several Nuthatches that drop by. The Downy woodpeckers hammer at the bird feeders and stumps on a regular basis picking flies out of the bark and digging for grubs. The sock with all the birds is filled with Nyjer seeds, the barrel feeder has sunflower seeds and the trough gets a full ration of mixed bird seed. Occasionally we add suet squares for the Blue jays and woodpeckers as an extra treat in extremely cold weather. This year we fed the birds about 100 pounds of seed per month to keep them happy. When spring comes, the Goldfinches and Hummingbirds will arrive with Robins and our resident family of crows that patrol all the back fields looking for pests. They never bother the garden or the other birds, so no one bothers them in return.