Anyone who feeds the birds knows that you need to be careful about what you do and how you do it. Today, we are going to look at how to feed uncooked oatmeal to wild birds. Oatmeal is a great source of nutrition for wild birds, so let’s get started!
You can feed uncooked oatmeal to wild birds by mixing it with suet and creating your very own fat balls at home. We are going to walk through all the steps for doing this to make it easy for you, so you can have fat and happy birds this winter!
What Do You Need?
To make fat balls with uncooked oatmeal, you will need:
- Cup of suet or lard
- cups of oats, not cooked
- Dried fruit (optional)
- Chopped nuts (optional)
You can increase the quantities if you like, but make sure that you keep this ratio of 2:1 oats to fat intact, so that the fat balls cling together and are not too greasy for the birds. If you include nuts and dried fruit, decrease the amount of oats or increase the amount of fat a bit.
You are also going to need a pot to melt the fat in.
How to make Uncooked Oatmeal for Wild Birds (STEP BY STEP)
- Melt Fat
Melt the fat in a large pot over a medium heat. Do not allow it to burn; you want it to slowly and gently melt. There is no need to turn the heat up high.
Stir a little to keep it from sticking, and turn off the stove when the fat has melted.
- Add Oats
Once the fat has melted, stir in the oats. Mix well so that the oats are all combined. You don’t want any pockets of dry oats anywhere.
- Add Optional Extras
If you are adding dried fruit or nuts, chop them into small pieces and then stir them into the melted fat along with the oats. They do not need to be cooked, but stir thoroughly so that everything is mixed in.
- Cool A Bit
Move the pan off the hot ring and allow it to cool until the fat has become reasonably cool to the touch, but not cold.
- Shape Into Balls
Scoop some of the cooled fat out and shape it into a ball, and then set this on a tray. If you want to, you can press a loop of string into the fat ball to hang it up with. Make balls from all of your oatmeal mix.
- Finish Cooling
Allow the balls to finish cooling on the tray. If you have not pressed string into them, you can now cut them into segments so that they can be placed on a bird table. If you have used string, you can hang them up, but be aware that the string might come out once the birds have had a go at the fat ball.
Fat balls are the best way to feed uncooked oatmeal to wild birds, because they help them to build up strength and reserves for the winter and cold weather.