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Using a bird table to provide food in the winter probably saves the lives of up to a million garden birds every year. A bird table is also good for feeding live food to birds during spring which adult birds can feed to their chicks.

Hanging Bird Table

Make the most of your bird table by following these 10 simple tips.

1. Although most bird tables come mounted on a pole, if you want to attract shy or secretive birds choose a bird table you can hang from a tree.

2. Whether you make or buy a bird table ensure that the wood comes from sustainable sources and is approved by the FSC. Your supplier will be able to help you if you are uncertain.

3. Don’t put a bird table too close to windows, doors or paths as human movement is likely to scare bird from visiting your bird table.

4. A roof will not only keep food dry but will prevent large birds such as magpies and gulls getting to the food on your bird table.

5. Clean your bird table regularly with a special cleaner or mild disinfectant to prevent the build up of bacteria that may be harmful to birds.

6. If you are worried about predators such as squirrels or cats attacking the birds as they feed or eating the food you put out a special baffle or metal collar will stop them climbing up the post to the table.

7. Place your bird table near a shrub, tree or fence so that birds can fly for cover if they are ambushed by predators.

8. A traditional thatched table may look pretty but remember in the spring birds may remove the straw to use for nest building.

9. Bird tables made from modern materials such as plastic, glass and metal will last longer than a traditional wooden bird table and may suit modern, urban gardens better,

10. Thrushes, blackbirds and wagtails like to feed from the ground so choose a low bird table if you want to attract these species.

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