Do You Feed Wildlife?
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Thread: Do You Feed Wildlife?

  1. #1
    Senior Member Fred's Avatar
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    Do You Feed Wildlife?

    You folks feed birds, squirrels, deer, whatever?
    I live sort of on the edge so see all sorts of hungry critters show up. Hummingbirds are some of the visitors we assist, lately to the tune of about 1.5 pounds of sugar a day. Here is a quick video from this afternoon of a some of the bolder ones.


    Quail and finches get their regular hand outs here too. Of course the garden water and bird food all tend to draw in other things farther up the food chain. (The Game Camera thread captures some of these other visitors). Interestingly enough I cornered a bobcat kitten near those hummingbird feeders in my rose garden a week ago. Fierce little football sized bundle of fur and claws was ready to tear me a new one...very convincing.
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    Senior Member TW_in_BC's Avatar
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    We hand-fed some raccoons at a campground a few years back...probably not the best thing to do but they seemed to know their way around and who would give them food; as soon as we stopped, they moved on to the next site.
    I don't feed deer or bear or cougar...at least not intentionally. It seems like every week on the news, there's some bear getting shot because they became habituated to human food (garbage) that wasn't stored properly.

    I don't install bat-houses because my brother had a few dozen families move into his attic one year and it was hell to get rid of them....they really make a mess!
    I like watching the hummingbirds...sweet little things!
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    Senior Member Chip's Avatar
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    I will admit to throwing out some feed for the critters. However it was only when we had 100 inches of snow and it was below zero temps. Just to help them through a impossible situation after a very long winter. .

    Personally don't think it's a good idea to feed them on a regular basis. CWD in our area is spreading like crazy for example. From people feeding/baiting deer.
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    Senior Member GaryL's Avatar
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    Yes on some and No on others. Hummers get fed from early spring right through late fall and I go through 75 pounds of sugar every year. It starts out with just one or two pairs and by late August I have at least 100 birds sucking juice every day and especially in the evenings.
    Deer get fed but not until after hunting season which is right after harvest time here and at around this time of year the bears go den up. You can't afford to feed bears because those pigs would camp out on a 50 pound sack of corn until it is gone. The deer come and eat a couple times a day but only eat a small portion of what I put out. As soon as the spring arrives and the bears show up the corn goes away. Each weekend my wife cleans out the fridge of leftovers we did not consume and that goes way out back where coons, coyotes, fox and possums visit at night and the ravens and crows during the day. Once in a while if I have a good day fishing the guts go out back and I get the bald eagles and one time I did get a bobcat on the camera. I once got a blurry picture of what was either a Marten or Fisher so can't say which but both do exist here along with an occasional mink.

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    Senior Member Xracer's Avatar
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    Talk about bold little birds. When I'd go out to refill the feeders they would swarm around me. Also as my fingers were to large for them to perch on I'd hold a twig and a dixie cup of sugar water. Little jewels would perch on the stick and drink from the cup right in my hands.
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  7. #6
    Senior Member GaryL's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Xracer View Post
    Talk about bold little birds. When I'd go out to refill the feeders they would swarm around me. Also as my fingers were to large for them to perch on I'd hold a twig and a dixie cup of sugar water. Little jewels would perch on the stick and drink from the cup right in my hands.
    If you want to have some fun with friends just put a red or yellow flower sticker on the brim of a ball cap and have them stand by the feeders. Every evening here we watch what we call hummer wars. Those males tend to be very territorial and will dive bomb any birds that are not their mates or buddies. I have 4 of the Perky Pet glass wide mouth 32 ounce jar feeders #209 and love them. I have to fill all 4 every day at this time of the year. I make my batch of juice 8 quarts at a time, 1 cup sugar to 4 cups water and heat it to just before boiling and allow it to cool. The glass jars are great with the wide mouth and easy to clean with a bottle brush and a little clorox, never use any soap to clean the jars. The top lid where it hangs from is a reservoir you can add a little corn or olive oil to that keep the ants and other insects away. Check them out here. https://www.perkypet.com/perky-pet-b...-nectar-bb209b

    GaryL
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    Senior Member sibyrnes's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fred View Post
    You folks feed birds, squirrels, deer, whatever?
    Yeah, I pay my models:

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    Senior Member reddave's Avatar
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    If you don't feed the birds you will never get to see them, right? I could watch the hummingbird feeders for hours. I have a male Rufous who I refer to as the "Orange Baron." When he is around he'll just sit in the nearby aspen and wait to attack any other hummingbirds who dare go near the feeder. He even does circles around me when I refill it. I also enjoy how the different birds indicate how the seasons are changing. No animals are more in tune with the Earth then the birds.
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    Senior Member bartruff's Avatar
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    Birds... including hummers.....and a mineral (mostly salt) block 50 yards from the house.....

    A friend, neighbor and coworker of mine with a PHD in Wildlife Biology ...said feeding wildlife is not a good idea as it concentrates them, spreads diseases and attracts predators...…

    He said water is particularly dangerous as it is nearly impossible to keep it clean and there are ample natural sources for them.....soooo I put the water away....

    Still feed the Hummers and throw out some sunflower seeds away from the house and the windows...and I change the sugar water every three days being careful to clean the feeder with vinegar ....

    I have had Bully Hummers......so I put a second feeder on the other side of the house and they eventually get discouraged at trying to monopolize both of the feeders. I try not to feed the squirrels but they are persistent ...
    Last edited by bartruff; 08-06-2019 at 07:59 AM.
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  11. #10
    Senior Member Xracer's Avatar
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    I know your not supposed to feed the critters but dang it when you have a Scrub Jay land on your hand to get some peanuts it makes you feel good. There's something about a wild animal that trust you not to hurt it. Makes you feel like a better person.
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