Wednesday 18 December 2013

Nature's Feast Seed Blends

The beauty of Nature's Feast's Twist feeders is that you can easily see which food offering within them is proving most popular with the birds. Hence, when Nature's Feast asked me to test out three of their seed blends, I already had an idea of how to do it.

I was given:

* High Energy No Mess 12 Seed
* Supreme 8 Seed Blend
* Everyday 4 Seed Blend

I have two Twist feeders, so put the 8 and 4 seed blends into two sections of each, and for the third section of each, filled one with the High Energy mix, and the other with a supply of black sunflower seeds.

Then it was simply a case of observing the feeders, which at this time of year isn't that easy, when you go out to work or with the Festive season approaching, have to attend get-togethers, away from home.

I'm quite lucky with the array of birds that visit my garden. I generally see decent numbers of house sparrows, blue, great, coal and long-tailed tits, green, bull, gold and chaffinches, nuthatches, robins and dunnocks, wrens and goldcrests, blackbirds, starlings, collared doves, wood pigeons, song thrushes, magpies, jays, carrion crows, plus at the moment, a most welcome pair of blackcaps.

Last winter, I found that the High Energy Supreme mix from Nature's Feast attracted a siskin to my garden for the first time, so I had high hopes of spotting something new with these mixes.

Unsurprisingly, the High Energy No Mess mix went first. It was popular with finches, tits, robins and the nuthatches, though that made a change from them taking several black sunflower seeds each visit, before darting off into the apple trees at the rear of the garden to stash them.

The 8 and 4 seed blends were a hit with the sparrows mainly, and when I tried some of it on the tray feeders, it was taken by the greedy wood pigeons and collared doves over a few days.

I think at this time of year though, when the bite of winter hasn't yet set in, the birds still have other food sources around, so aren't so reliant on the food we put out. To test this theory, after the 4 and 8 blends had been consumed from the Twist feeders, I refilled with a mix from another supplier, to see how that fared. It would appear to be even slower to be taken, as it's been out there for almost 2 weeks now, and is not in need of being refilled.

So based on this rather unscientific test, the 4 and 8 blends, are less popular than the high energy ones, but in my experience, better than similar mixes available elsewhere.

Having found a local stockist of their products, I hope to test more over the winter, when the weather deteriorates and the birds are visiting the feeders more often, to see if these new blends, as well as the one from last winter, attract siskins again, and maybe something unusual. A redpoll would be nice again.

Disclaimer: Images used for this blog are mine and from my garden, but from before this test took place. Had such dull weather during the test that I couldn't get anything worth airing.

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