Birdwatchers are always looking for the newest and up-t0-date method to attract various birds into their back yards. One method that is always a hit with their feathered friends is a new birdfeeder—specifically a suet feeder.
According to the Baltimore Bird Club, suet consists of raw beef fat. Suet is also used in the creation of candles and puddings. In the case of birds, suet is usually provided during the colder winter months of the year. During the warmer summer months, the fat would melt and make a monumental mess.
Suet cakes combine raw beef fat with such bird delicacies as birdseed, various bugs, and other bird favorites. The suet itself proves to be a valuable source of energy and protein to sustain the birds through winter, and the other ingredients are problematic for birds to forage for in the winter.
Commercially sold suet cakes can contain items other than birdseed. Some include cornmeal, fruits, dried insects, peanuts, and even mealworms. Then others may contain peanuts, mealworms, cranberries, and sunflower seeds.
There are many suet feeders on the market, with each attracting a different type of bird.
- Cage suet feeders are the most widely available and the most commonly used. They will accommodate a square cake and can be hung from or mounted onto a tree or a pole.
- Tail prop suet feeders are the ideal choice for attracting woodpeckers. They are similar in style to a cage suet feeder, only with an added bottom piece to be used by the bird for more stability.
- Upside down suet feeders are designed to keep away various birds and pests—such as starlings. Only those breeds of birds that can feed upside down will use this type of feeder.
- Sheltered suet feeders are designed to keep both the birds and the birdseed dry during wet weather. Some have the appearance of a house. Others provide a dome over the top of the feeder.