Nature Walk and Scavenger Hunt
Reader's Bird Seed Treat

Feed the Birds!

or Treats for the Tweets

Enjoy making all the following activities after reading Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf by Lois Ehlert. To see all our Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf activities, click here

Invite some new, feathered friends to your house by making the bird treats featured in Red Leaf, Yellow Leaf. They require just a few, simple ingredients and are just messy enough to make that lots of fun will ensue. Once the treats are finished and hanging outdoors just remember to be patient – birds take a bit to warm up to something new, but once they do they just might start knocking on your door and asking for more!

 

All of the following activities were adapted from the following website: A Home for Wild Birds

Bird Suet

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup lard or Crisco
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup wild birdseed (purchased, or mixed from the suggested ingredients, at the bottom of this post)

Directions

  1. Stir the lard or shortening and peanut butter together.
    IMG_2742
  2. Add the other ingredients and mix well. 
    IMG_2746
    IMG_2748

     
  3. Use to make a Hanging Bird Treat (see below); spread on a wooden platform bird feeder; or fill muffin tins 1/4” full and freeze, then use in a suet feeder (this last option works best in cold weather, as the peanut butter and lard will melt!). 

 

Hanging Bird Treats

Ingredients

  • Bread slices
  • Cookie sheet
  • Cookie cutter
  • Bird Suet (see above)
  • Drinking straw
  • Ribbon, sting, or twine

You will need 1 piece of bread for each Hanging Bird Treat that you want to make.

  1. Lay bread slices on a cookie sheet.
 
  • Using the cookie cutter, cut the bread into the desired shape.
    IMG_2736
  • Using the plastic drinking straw, press a hole near the top of the shape. This will be used to hang the treat.
    IMG_2740
  • Leave the bread on the cookie sheet to dry. (It will take a day or so. Young readers can keep turning the bread shapes over from time to time if they choose.)
    IMG_2749
  • Once the bread is dry, use a plastic knife to spread one side of the shape with the prepared suet.
    IMG_2755
  • Slip the ribbon through the hole.
    IMG_2756
  • Tie the treat to a tree branch outside. 
    IMG_2758
  •  

     

    Pine Cone Bird Feeder

    IMG_2765

     

    Ingredients

    • Pine cone
    • Peanut Butter
    • Birdseed
    • Ribbon, twine, or sting
    • Spoon or plastic knife
    • Pie plate or large plate
    1. Tie a piece of twine or string to the top of the pine cone.
    2. Use a spoon or plastic knife to fill all the openings of the pine cone with peanut butter.
    3. Pour the birdseed into a plate or pie plate.
    4. Roll the peanut butter-covered pine cone in the birdseed (If needed, gently press the seed to help it stick to the peanut butter).
    5. Hang the feeder from a tree branch outside.

    Note: You can also use the Bird Suet recipe, above, to fill the pine cone. Roll the coated pine cone in more birdseed, if desired. 

    Make Your Own Wild Bird Food

    Here is a list of suggested ingredients for making your own wild bird food.

    • Raisins
    • Oatmeal
    • Crisco
    • Orange slices
    • Chopped nuts
    • Dried cranberries
    • Graham crackers crumbs
    • Whole wheat flour
    • Peanut butter (crunchy is best)
    • Chopped apples
    • Black oil sunflower seeds
    • Dry bread
    • Stale crackers
    • Molasses
    • Cornmeal
    • Honey
    • Dried cherries or berries

     

    Now that you've made treats for your feathered friends, get ready to make your own 'bird seed' treats tomorrow! Sign up for e-mail updates so you won't miss it!

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