How to create a feasting table for the birds in your garden
This is a two-in-one morning entertainment. Young kids love to squidge up a gooey mess and then have the fun of watching the birds come to enjoy what they’ve made.
First of all, choose where your Bird Bistro is going to be. Ideally it will be somewhere close to a window so that you can enjoy watching the birds all year round. If you don’t have a tree or even a garden, this is still something you can do. You can create a bird feeding area by hanging food on a garden shed, off a balcony or even by putting hooks above a window to hang the bird food on.
Next you need to fill your Bird Bistro with food. Below are a few ideas of what to put on the menu:
If you’ve got any old dried fruit, stale bread or apples, pears or plums that have gone past their best then use them to create a fruit garland. Thickly slice or quarter the fruit and bread, and then use something with a point (a knitting needle is ideal) to create a hole. Take your wire and push the bread and fruit through and then tie into a circular shape ready to hang on the tree.
Pinecone bird feeder
Pinecones make great natural bird feeders. The idea here is to stick birdseed onto the cone using something sticky - lard, honey or peanut butter are all ideal.
Tie a piece of string to the top of your pinecone and create a hanging loop. Next take a cup of bird seed and then add a couple of tablespoons of your chosen sticky substance and give it a good mix. Once your mixture is thick and sticky, take handfuls of it and pack it on to the pinecone. Put the finished pinecones in the fridge to set and then hang them up in your Bird Bistro.
Make a hole in a yoghurt pot and thread some string through. Tie the string onto a twig so that it sits at the open end of the yoghurt pot. This will be for the birds to sit on.
Next take some lard that’s been left out at room temperature and cut it up into squares and put it in a mixing bowl then stir in some birdseed to create a thick sticky mixture. You could also add raisins or chopped up apple to give the birds an extra treat.
You now need to fill the yoghurt pot using your hands to scoop out the mixture and press it into the corners until the pot is full. Put it in the fridge for an hour or until set. Once ready, cut the yoghurt pot off with scissors and hang the cake for the birds to enjoy.
Once your Bird Bistro is stocked and open for business, it’s time to get the kids to sit back and see who comes to visit. Use the Internet or a bird book from the library to learn about the different species that come to enjoy the food. You could even encourage them to keep a log of the different types of birds that pop in for dinner.