Perhaps I can suggest a way to keep the
Brown Creeper coming. At my previous residence, I fed suet from a container
nailed to a (Hackberry) tree trunk. Woodpeckers, Titmice, Chickadees,
Nuthatches and Starlings would all hack at the suet, in the process flaking off
little bits of suet, many of which would land on the tree bark. Then the creeper
would come along and glean them from the tree trunk. There was enough action at
the suet to keep him coming all winter.
Creepers do not have strong bills, capable of
hacking pieces of suet off a block of it as do woodpeckers, chickadees, etc.
Rather, their smalled, curved bills are adapted to glean insects and insect
larvae from tree bark. There were probably enough tiny pieces around
the feeder for your creeper to find something he could handle, but you cannot
count on it staying that way. Also, creepers probably avoid the rough and tumble
of competition around a feeder unless, as happened today, the need for food was
made desperate by a storm. The closer you can get small bits of suet to the tree
bark where he normally finds food, the more likely you will make it for
your creeper to stick around.
To go further, why not shave some thin flakes
off a block of suet and put them on some tree bark? I have not tried that idea
myself, but I did hold a Brown Thrasher in my yard through one winter by
grinding suet into worm-like strands in a meat grinder and placing them in the
leaves where the thrasher did his thrashing.
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, January 20, 2011 8:06
Subject: Brown Creeper at
> With the snow in north Missouri (Hannibal), the birds
arrived in droves. At
> daybreak I had 30+ Cardinals on the second-story
deck. What I had NEVER
> seen before was that a Brown Creeper came to the
suet feeder. It hangs right
> against the trunk (it is the tree he likes
to frequent). So, it wasn't too
> surprising he found it. But then I saw
him on the deck picking at sunflowers.
> Amazing! What a great day to be
> Debbie Nichols
> Hannibal, MO
> The Audubon
Society of Missouri's Wild Bird Discussion Forum
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