Kitchen scraps make an excellent addition to your usual choice of bird foods. By putting out the right scraps, you are helping to reduce landfill waste, as well as providing the birds with additional essential fats and carbohydrates which are especially important in the Winter and during nesting season.
You can simply place on a bird table or ground feeder, or chop them small and add to seed mix in a feeder. You can even mix with suet and press into a plastic container or empty coconut shell to make an easy fat feeder.
The classic choice is stale bread, crusts, cake and biscuit which most birds will really enjoy, although you shouldn't put out too much as the nutritional value is low. Break up any large pieces, and if it's very hard you can soak in a little water to ensure birds don't choke.
If you've been busy baking, then birds will also eat raw pastry, as long as it is not too sweet or salty.
Birds love mild, grated cheddar or other hard cheese, but soft cheeses such as brie and blue cheese are not suitable.
Many raw vegetables are indigestible to birds, but peas and sweetcorn are fine, and so is leftover mashed potato!
Raw meat is also indigestible, but unsalted bacon, rinds and fat are an excellent source of protein for insect-eaters. You can also offer beef fat and marrow bones.
Chopped, cooked eggs contain many essential nutrients for birds, and even the crushed egg shells will provide calcium for nesting birds, plus the grit helps their digestion.
Plain, cooked pasta and rice is a popular choice and a great source of carbohydrates. Just make sure that they are not coated in sauce or cheese.
You can even provide wet or dry dog or cat food for birds! You will need to break up and soak dry foods though, to prevent birds choking.
Any windfalls or bruised fruit that's past its best is fine to put out, or you can used soaked, dried fruit. Simply leave whole on the ground or bird table for birds to peck away at - fruit is especially popular with soft-billed birds such as blackbirds, thrushes, robins and wrens.
Stale cereal and oats are fine, just as long as they don't have a high sugar or salt content and are not soaked in milk. Cooked oats can harden around a bird's beak, so raw oats are preferred.
All sorts of unsalted nuts would certainly be popular. Please chop them up as small as possible, especially during breeding season.
It is vitally important to clear away any uneaten food. Not only does it attract rats and other vermin, but it can spread bacteria, and birds will not touch food that is off.
It is important to regularly clean your feeders and bird tables.
Please take a look at our range of specialist cleaning products here.