Why Cheap Bird Food Isn’t Really a Good Deal
I’ve not spent a lot of time outside this winter sadly, but I keep a connection with nature by making sure to spend some time watching the birds each day even if I don’t go anywhere. The past couple of months I’ve been pretty ill with the aftermath of a flu bug, and no matter how warm I wrap up I’ve been too exhausted a lot of the time to go far. The birds in my garden are a constant connection with the outside world even when I don’t actually make it out of the house, and for that reason, I try to look after them as best as I can. They’ve become almost an extension of the family, with many of the ones I can tell apart being given names, and I like to make sure they’re well fed, especially over the cold winter months when they need it the most.
Over the years of feeding the birds, I’ve begun to notice that not all bird food is the same. The range in quality varies dramatically, and some of the food I’ve tried them on in the past has gone completely untouched. Like most people, I started feeding them with the cheapest food I could find, but I soon realised it was a waste of money if it wasn’t actually being eaten… What’s the point in buying it at all if the birds don’t like it?
This isn’t a paid sponsored post, but in the interest of full disclosure, I did receive the following bags of bird food free in order to compare them for you. All opinions are my own, and I truly believe in their product.
The turning point for me was when Haith’s contacted me last year and asked if I would be interested in reviewing their sunflower hearts. You can read the full review here, but to sum it up, I was really impressed by how clean their Superclean™ food really is. I’d got so used the dusty bird food I’d been buying that it just seemed standard, and I hadn’t really considered whether that was good for the birds or not because I didn’t know there were alternatives. I started to do more research on the variety of bird foods available as well as looking into if what I was feeding them was actually beneficial. The possibility that I was doing more harm than good was more than enough motivation to start paying better attention to the quality of the food I give them, but I still wanted to know more.
In my research, I discovered that bad quality bird food can actually cause a whole host of problems, and when it’s really dusty (like pretty much all the budget shop seeds) it’s terrible for their respiratory system, which makes sense once you think about it. I mean, would you want to inhale lots of dust every time you ate dinner? Probably not! I’ve also found out that the extraneous husk can damage delicate tissues and allow entry of pathogens, Like most things, if the deal you’re getting seems too good to be true then it probably is. Those cheap seeds from bargain stores are the price they are for a reason, and a lot of the time it’s because they’re pretty old which means the quality will have naturally deteriorated. What this means is that it either won’t attract the birds you’re hoping to, or your feathered friends will fill up on seeds lacking the nutrition of fresher ones. They’re also more likely to be seeds that were rejected by brands that care about quality, which could be down to anything from age to pest damage.
Since first working with Haith’s I have continued to feed my garden birds their seeds and I’ve been thrilled with the new visitors to the garden! Since initially working with them I’ve attracted goldfinches, long-tailed tits, blue tits, and black caps – none of which previously came to my feeders – so when they asked if I would be interested in helping spread the word about their Superclean™ bird food even further, of course, I said yes. If you’re here then I know wildlife matters to you so I’m excited to show you the difference between the two feeds – you really can tell the difference just by looking at them!
As soon as you open the bags you can see that the Superclean™ seed lives up to its name and even looking through the clear plastic of the bag itself I could see a dusty residue sticking to the plastic of the uncleaned seeds. I asked my mum to grab a handful from each bag so that I could photograph a comparison and her hands ended up covered in a dusty residue from the uncleaned seeds. For an even clearer comparison, I’ve placed them on some black cardstock below.
I’m always happy to work with brands who genuinely care about wildlife and their product. Haith’s are one such company. Quality control of bird food is a top priority the people at Haith’s and it shows in their products as well as at my bird table, where their seeds get demolished far quicker than those from other brands! Want to know more about their process? Take a look at the infographic below or head on over to their website where they go into more detail about their Superclean™ seeds. After seeing the results in my garden they’ll definitely be remaining on my bird table!