British households are being encouraged to feed birds using kitchen leftovers to combat declining wildlife numbers.
Outdoor experts at GardenBuildingDirect.com have produced a simple guide detailing which foods are suitable for wild birds.
Feeding local wildlife in your backyard aids nature conservation and gardens are now considered an important element for a nationwide conservation effort.
Frequently thrown away egg shells, beef fat trimmings and stale hard cheeses are some of the scraps that are incredibly beneficial for wildlife due to high nutritional value.
A spokesman from GardenBuildingsDirect.com explained “The number of wild birds is decreasing within the UK at a worrying pace. However, homeowners can do their part by simply understanding which foods are safe for wildlife.
“Utilising waste is key to maintaining the environment and should be a priority for all.
“By using food that would otherwise be discarded, households can take a small step to becoming more sustainable and eco - friendly for the future generation.”
Here is GardenBuildingsDirect.com ’s guide to safe kitchen scraps to feed birds:
Baked Goods: Stale bread, cakes and cookies are all attractive to wild birds. Remember to crumble into small pieces and soak in water before placing outside.
Cheese: Avoid soft or mouldy cheeses, stick to stale, hard cheeses like mild cheddar. High fat foods are great especially in the winter months. Use a cheese grater for small and easy to digest bites.
Pasta and Rice: Cooked plain pasta or rice is a great source of carbohydrates for birds. Wash thoroughly to remove any oil or salt and cut into small pieces.
Vegetables: Scrap veggies such as baked potato and vegetables left over from canned soups are a great offering for birds. Mix with sunflower seeds for a perfect combination.
Meat: As with cheese no mouldy or rotten meat should be given to birds. Meat is a valuable source of protein, try beef fat trimmings and meat bones for a tasty offering. However, be aware of other pests that may be after these treats, think about placing the meat in a bird feeder out of reach from wildlife.
Pet Food: Wet pet food for cats and dogs is designed to be healthy for pets offering all necessary nutrients and so can equally be a great offering for birds. Dry pet food is also an option but be sure to add water beforehand. A small amount can go a long way.
Cereal: Stick to cereal with a little or no sugar content and avoid artificial dyes, add water and leave to soak for a wholesome bird treat.
Eggs: Cooked eggs are a source of necessary nutrients for birds, whilst the egg shell itself can be a great source of calcium especially for nesting birds and help aid digestion. Egg shells are great throughout the changing weather and do not attract vermin like other produce may do.