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West Virginia Wildlife
Making Bird Feed
Patrick McMurtry This Feed's For The Birds

February 20, 2013
Reporter: Patrick McMurtry
Videographer: Brad Rice


Take a peek outside Connie Roadcap's window almost anytime and you'll see this, a parade of birds coming to her deck for breakfast, lunch and dinner served 24/7. Her sister, Karen, is a wildlife biologist with The West Virginia Division of Natural Resources specializing in birds.

"Birds are very easy to observe, they are one of the easiest animals to watch. You can go outside, out in the country, in the city or the suburbs and look out and see birds almost all the time and they fly and people think that's pretty cool."

Of course there are some things you can do to make sure you have a steady stream of birds to watch. Keep the area clear of hiding places for prey, make sure the area is clean, and give them plenty of chow.

"If you feed them, they will come. If you only have one feeder, most experts say to use black oil sunflower seed. Number two is suet, although my niece did a science project and it showed suet was more attractive than the sunflower seed." says McClure.

Keep in mind, if you put out feed, more and more birds will come to eat. That can get expensive but Connie has figured out a way to keep the birds fed and keep enough money to buy groceries for her own family, she makes her own suet.

"You want to start out with shortening. It has some meat fat, some animal fat which is good for the birds. We add some peanut butter and then add corn meal and we will add it until it has a good consistency so we can put it in a container and freeze it." says Roadcap.

Now Connie lives in the woods and she gets a whole lot more birds than we get in the city or out in the valleys, but take a little time, cook up some suet or buy it in the store, and you'll have birds outside your window year round.

LEARN MORE at the W. Va. DNR


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