Homemade Bird Feeder and Suet recipes from the national bird-feeding society

Friday, December 12, 2003 | 12:00 a.m. CST; updated 4:07 p.m. CDT, Wednesday, July 9, 2008


Tree Sparrow

This sparrow is marked by a rusty cap, a dark eye line, dark wing bars and plain gray breast with central spot. Tree sparrows, abundant as winter residents, only occasionally venture to feeders. When they do feed domestically, they usually select small seeds from the ground.

Homemade Bird Feeder

  1. Select a firm pine cone of any size. Cones can be purchased at craft stores or collected outdoors.
  2. Tie a ribbon around the end of the pine cone. Leave enough loose so that you can tie the finished feeder to a tree.
  3. Smear the cone with peanut butter
  4. Roll the peanut butter-covered pine cone in bird seed. You can purchase see at a variety of stores or make your own from sunflower and other nut meats.
  5. Hang the feeder in a tree by your window and wait for your feathered visitors to appear.


Red-headed woodpecker

These abundant birds are a familiar sight all year round. However, population

numbers can fluctuate greatly from year to year and from area to area in response to the amount of food available. The solid red head and white wing patches distinguish this bird.

Tried and True Suet Treat

  • 1 cup crunchy peanut butter
  • 2 cups quick cooking oats
  • 2 cups cornmeal
  • 1 cup lard (no substitutions)
  • 1 cup white flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Melt lard and peanut butter together, then stir in everything else. Pour mixture into containers to about 1 1/2 inches thick. Freeze. Cut into squares to fit your suet feeder.

    Birdie Granola

  • 1/2 cup chopped rendered* suet
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 2 1/2 cups cornmeal
  • 1 cup mixed birdseed

Combine ingredients and press into a jelly roll pan.

Feeeze until firm enough to crumble. Put the crumbles in a large bowl with some peanuts, birdseeds, chopped apples, raisins and more chunks of suet.

Mix well, then divide into single-serving containers and freeze until needed.

To make even more substantial "granola" add uncooked oatmeal, bran or pumpkin seeds.

* To render, melt suet over low heat in heavy pan, cool, reheat and cool again. While it's in its melted state, add other ingredients.

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