Category Archives: Information about the 2010 cold snap

Help birds through the cold

The RSPB has just issued its “wild bird winter survival plan”  to help birds get through the worst of the freezing weather. It recommends:

  1. Put out feed regularly, especially in severe weather.  Set up a bird table and use high calorie seed mixes.
  2. Put out hanging feeders for black sunflower seeds, sunflower hearts, sunflower-rich mixes or unsalted peanuts.
  3. Ensure a supply of fresh water every day. If it is very cold use tepid water but DO NOT use any antifreeze products.
  4. Put out fruit, such as apples and pears, for Blackbirds, Song Thrushes and other members of the thrush family.
  5. Food bars or fat hung up or rubbed into the bark of trees is a great help for Treecreepers, Goldcrests and many other species.
  6. Put up nest boxes to provide roost sites for the smaller birds. They will then be used for breeding later in the year.

Keeping warm in the snow

No, they’re not part of Britain’s autochthonous fauna, but the baboons in Knowsley Safari Park have provided this arresting image of the winter’s heavy snowfall.  Hot potatoes have just been distributed.

The troop of Olive baboons, over 100-strong, have all been born and bred in Merseyside and they augment their diet by hunting pheasants and rabbits that stray into their zone.  Snow is therefore not an alien experience for them, although this winter is on course to be the hardest in 30 years.