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Nuts are an ideal winter food due to their high fat content. This is primarily true for native nut species, but many question whether other nuts, such as peanuts, are suitable food for birds. Not every food is suitable for every type of bird. Therefore, peanuts are a conditionally suitable bird food and it is important to offer the birds as wide a range of foods as possible, which should also include a variety of nuts. But are peanuts suitable as birdseed in winter?

Bird seed in winter

Basically, birds that are fed in winter are divided into two different categories, the soft eaters and the grain eaters. Soft eaters prefer soft food such as insects or wild fruits. Peanuts are completely unsuitable for this group. are useful peanuts exclusively for grain eaters.

Grain eaters can be identified by the shape of their beaks. Compared to soft eaters, grain eaters have a rather short, broad and strong beak. On the one hand, they are good at cracking grains and, on the other hand, they can also peel them. Although grain eaters and soft eaters sometimes have a foraging plate that overlaps, as in the form of wild fruits, grain eaters still prefer seeds.
Grain eaters wintering here include:

  • house sparrow
  • woodpecker
  • tit
  • finch
  • nuthatch
  • bullfinch
  • bunting
  • greenling
  • goldfinch
  • siskin
  • robin
Goldfinch at the feeder

Wild pigeons are also grain eaters, but they are not welcome guests at bird feeders. you are disease carriers and should therefore not be fed if possible, so that their population is not increased unnaturally.
Grain eaters are the group of birds that can also be fed peanuts. However, peanuts should not be exclusively fed, which are a rich source of proteins and fats, but represent a one-sided source of food.

Peanuts as birdseed

If you want to offer the peanut as part of the birdseed, you should do so properly. Peanut mixes are occasionally commercially available, but these are often suitable for a limited number of grain eaters. In order for the peanut to be a food source for as many of the bird species in question as possible, the peanut should never be fed whole. It should always be around Peanut Break Act. Although the peanut can also be offered in shell, in this case it is usually the second choice and nuts without the shell are preferred.

tip: The peanut can be part of birdseed mixes, or offered as a single feed in addition to other seeds and grains.

Peanut bird seed can be placed in standard bird feeders or dispensers. On peanut lining in nets however, you should dispense. Not only can the nets be blown away by the wind when they are empty and end up in nature as plastic waste, the birds can also become entangled in them. The emptier the net becomes, the greater the risk of them getting their claws tangled in it.

If there is no other option than to buy the peanut feed in the net, the feed should be taken out of the net beforehand. There are now suitable dispensers into which the feed from the nets can be poured. Occasionally, such food is also sold in larger quantities and can then be poured into the dispensers in portions.

Make your own bird seed from peanuts

Providing peanut food as part of winter feeding makes sense. But the food is not always available locally in stores. As an alternative to ready-made products, you can also make peanut bird seed yourself. To do this, buy suitable peanuts in stores. When buying, however, you have to pay attention to a few things so that the peanut does not become a danger. The purchased peanuts must have the following characteristics:

  • unsalted
  • unroasted
  • briefly heated
  • no mold
  • organically grown as much as possible

First of all, it is necessary to ensure that the raw materials purchased are completely without salt are and not roasted became. Roasting allows the peanut to go rancid faster if it comes into contact with oxygen after opening the package. Rancid nuts can cause dangerous digestive problems in birds. Moldy feed can even be a reason why the animals die. It is therefore important to ensure that the raw materials are of high quality when selecting them.

You can then roughly chop the nuts. To do this, first put the shelled nuts in a plastic bag and then break them up roughly with the rolling pin. So you can already put the seeds in a bird feeder. However, it is better to offer the peanut as part of a feed mix for grain eaters.

To do this, heat coconut oil or beef tallow in a saucepan. Then mix in the broken peanuts and other grains. Then fill the whole thing into molds and hang it up with a string after it has cooled down. Small clay pots, for example, are suitable as containers.

Feed whole peanuts

The whole peanut is only suitable for a few birds, which, however, gratefully accept this food. Not infrequently, however, it is the squirrels that plunder the birdhouses when whole nuts of any kind are fed. So if you primarily want to feed the birds, you should make sure that the peanut is offered whole so that it is safe from other blackheads.

The jay specializes in cracking certain nuts. However, he rarely visits a feeding house directly. This means that you should bring suitable food close to its habitats. The peanut has a shell that can be cracked open by the jay's beak. However, he does this in peace and therefore creates small depots with his food, where he then gets to work on it in peace.
For the jay, the food should preferably be offered in the area of trees and not at a free-standing aviary. Although there is a greater risk of rodents getting the food, this can be minimized by using barriers on hanging devices.

As with other grain eaters, you can make the feed for the jay yourself. In this case, the effort is even significantly lower. This time you can buy the peanut food with the shell. Then thread the nuts one after the other onto a thread. The peanut has a relatively soft shell that is easy to pierce with a thick needle.

tip: You can, for example, thread the nuts as a wreath and simply hang them on a branch.

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