Sunday, January 13, 2013

Suet Cakes are Popular All Year Long

 Wisconsin Birds love their suet anytime of year

There isn't much happening today in Princeton, or at least at my house.  Last night the Green Bay Packers lost their playoff game to San Francisco.  This put most of Wisconsin in mourning.  The weather which was mild all week for Wisconsin, turned seasonable but it seems very cold.  It's garbage and recyclable day tomorrow, so that needs to be done.  I had to make bread because we only had one slice left.  I finished knitting a hat which I started a couple days ago and played Words with Friends.  Then I noticed that the suet feeders were empty.  It turned cold and the poor birds had nothing to eat for warmth and energy although they like to eat from these feeders all year long. Fortunately during my trip to the grocery store last week, I noticed a couple packages of suet already ground up.  They were inexpensive so I bought both of them.  I put one in the freezer and put the other in a saucepan.  I melted the suet, added some peanut butter, some shortening, a cut up apple that had seen better days, some birdseed and lastly a handful of dried meal worms.  It cost almost nothing.  The shortening was so old, I don't remember when I bought it.  I think I bought it to grease the birdfeeder poles to keep the squirrels from climbing up.  The apple should have been in the compost a long time ago and the meal worms were from last summer when the bluebirds were nesting.  I really don't think there is a special recipe for making suet cakes because the birds like any combination I put out.  I shouldn't say that.  My last batch had some dried prunes that I had in the back of the cabinet.  I threw them in without cutting them up.  When I refilled the suet feeder all that was left was big plump prunes.  I cut them up and put them back out on the tray and they were eaten.

When the premade suet cakes are on sale, we buy them.  I saved a couple of the plastic trays to use for my homemade version.  I pour the warm combination into the trays and chill.  The weather is cold enough outside to accomplish this easily.

 The Downy Woodpecker was one of the first to taste the new suet cakes.  
He came back many times so I think he likes them. 

 There are Sparrows and Juncos also.

 This Junco was also snacking on scraps of an old granola bar and a couple stale soda crackers.  
Nothing goes to waste in our house.

A few days earlier the Bluejay snacked on some pretzels.

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