Extra food fits the bill for birds

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COUNCIL officers have been offering food strictly for the birds during the current cold weather – and are urging others to do the same.

Recent icy conditions led to several ponds and lakes freezing over, depriving some birds of food sources such as underwater vegetation and insects.

To make up for that, North Tyneside Council officers have been feeding the birds at Killingworth Lake, pictured, like they did last winter when conditions were harsh and food scarce.

The authority’s green wardens have been putting out grain and also left-over vegetables donated by the Morrisons store at the nearby Killingworth Centre.

Jackie Hunter, the council’s biodiversity officer, said: “Killingworth Lake is a vast area which is home to an exceptionally large number of birds.

“Unfortunately, many of them are struggling due to the cold period.”

Residents are also being urged to do their bit by putting out bird feed such as fatballs, crushed peanuts, dried fruit, seeds and grain in their gardens.

Leftovers such as grated cheese, porridge oats, unsalted bacon and the insides of cooked potatoes are also good nutrition.

Water is also vital for both drinking and bathing, with bird baths kept from freezing over using small floating items such as twigs.