Nov. 20 program offers tips for feeding birds during the winter

By University of Illinois Extension

OREGON, Ill. — As the snow started flying in October, one couldn’t help but be extremely grateful when the furnace kicked on for the first time. We then tried to wrap are head around the fact that, yes, summer was long gone and fall was dwindling fast.

We look out our windows and are grateful we don’t have to “make it” through winter like our local wildlife. Wild animals are now facing a very strenuous future as fall settles into winter. To help some of our native wildlife through the extremes of seasonal changes, University of Illinois Extension Educator Peggy Doty will offer a Winter Bird Feeding program to help guide people on their quest to provide appropriate winter food for our feathered friends. This informational program will be from 3 to 4 p.m., Wednesday, Nov. 20, at the Ogle County Extension office, 421 W. Pines Road, Oregon, Ill.

Doty will display some commercial food types and show pictures of the species these seeds will attract. Information will be offered as to what food to avoid, feeder care, water requirements, and most importantly, budgeting for the winter commitment of feeding our local non-migratory species.

Many birds become dependent on a food source, so once we start feeding the birds, it can be detrimental to stop before spring,” said Doty.

Understanding a bird’s behavior will help attract and keep many species coming to your feeders,” Doty added. “Some birds will only feed on the ground, some on flat surfaces, while others prefer a feeder well off the ground. Providing multiple feeding options will attract a larger variety of birds for viewing.”

The Nov. 20 program will also offer some basic bird-watching techniques to help the novice birder better identify these winter guests. Feeding birds in the winter can be a wonderful pastime for the entire family.

Cost for the program is $5. Advance registration is needed. Phone the University of Illinois Extension office at (815) 732-2191 for more details or visit

From the Nov. 6-12, 2013, issue

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