ChronicChristmas Day 17: Feed the Animals

The current mild temperatures in Toronto notwithstanding, we have entered a time of year where it’s hard for wildlife to find food. I remember reading an article last year about how many waterfowl had starved to death because of the thick layer of ice on Lake Ontario that lasted for months and months. Watching birds and squirrels try to scrounge up food while shivering is heartbreaking.

Feed the animals. Take some time to find out what food is best to give them. For instance, bread may not be the best choice for birds, depending on the kind of bird you’re feeding. Most grocery stores sell seeds for wild birds that could be a much more nutritious choice. Filling up a bag with nuts and peanuts in the bulk store to give to the squirrels in the park could make both them and you happy.

I know a man who feed the squirrels in a local park every day, all year round, but especially in the winter. They come when he calls, and take the nuts from his hands. He knows them all individually, and can tell you stories about them and their little personalities. If I weren’t allergic to nuts, I’d I didn’t join him in getting to know the fluffy-tailed wee beasties.

Do you feed the wildlife in the winter?

#ChronicChristmas is an Advent calendar of tips for a sane holiday season with a chronic illness. Check back tomorrow for the next tip. To see all the posts in the series, click the #ChronicChristmas label below this post.


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