Flying Colors is a sponsored column on the hobby of backyard bird feeding written by Michael Zuiker, owner of the Wild Birds Unlimited store at the Lee Harrison Shopping Center. Visit the store at 2437 N. Harrison Street or call 703-241-3988.
Today I want to tell you about the benefits of feeding Jim’s Birdacious Bark Butter. Bark Butter is a peanut butter, calcium and rendered beef suet concoction. It was created by Wild Birds Unlimited president Jim Carpenter to attract Brown Creepers to his yard.
Bark Butter can be smeared on any tree, seed cylinder, suet plug feeder, or a specialty Bark Butter feeder. It is a sticky recipe that allows it to be smeared with a fork, but not stick to the fork.
Many of our customers have used it on the sides of their seed cylinders for added calcium during nesting season or added fat for cold winters. Birds will grab on to any of these surfaces to grab a bite-sized chunk and fly away with a delicious meal.
As I told you, Jim created Bark Butter to attract his Brown Creepers which wouldn’t come to any other food he offered. Well he got them plus so many more birds. Jim found that about 140 species, from the East Coast to the West Coast, are eating his Bark Butter product and the list keeps growing.
Nuthatches, woodpeckers, chickadees, mockingbirds, catbirds and cardinals are just a few of the many interested birds. Birds that migrate through our area also loved Bark Butter. Summer tanagers, bluebirds, indigo buntings and many warblers are frequent visitors to Bark Butter feeders.
Why Bark Butter and not peanut butter you ask? Well for one peanut butter is loaded with sugar, salt and other unnatural ingredients that are not intended for birds.
Two, even if you buy organic it is full of salt that can dehydrate a bird quickly. The soft pliable texture of Bark Butter allows the adults birds to bring new fledgings to the feeders to eat. Bark Butter also comes in a “Bit” size formula which can be added to any regular seed and nut feeder.
Bark Butter can be a great addition to any backyard. Everyone can benefit from this nutritious snack. Mama and Papa birds can easily grab a chunk and feed it to their young, Nuthatches can creep up and down a tree trunk and enjoy a nibble and you can enjoy watching your feathered friends snack on a nutritious meal while sitting back drinking your cup of coffee.
Spread the Bark Butter on a large tree at dusk and you have a great chance to see “Flying Squirrels” come down and feed. Flying Squirrels are very common in this area. But they are nocturnal and quite secretive.
Bark Butter and Bark Butter Bits is the most popular food you can offer the birds in your backyard. Easy to use and absolutely no mess to clean up makes this a great food source to offer your wild birds. We are the only store in the Northern Virginia area that carries this unique food. Stop on by and pick up a tub. Your birds will be very happy you did.
For an extended list of the birds that eat Bark Butter, go to www.barkbutter.com.