Under a five year Countryside Stewardship Scheme, Beale Wildlife Park has sown two nine hectare fields to help feed farmland birds and to help pollinators in their role of pollinating flowers and crops. Winter ground feeding provides additional food resource for birds in late winter and early spring by supplementing these crops when they have become depleted and before natural food sources become available in late spring.
Twice a week, 40kg of winter bird seed, matching that sown in the fields, is scattered along a footpath bordering the field alongside a hedge/tree line. Despite the very mild winter, a whole range of species are taking advantage in significant numbers.
The most notable feeders being: Chaffinch 100+, Linnet 80+, Reed Bunting 30+, Goldfinch 40+ and Yellowhammer 10+ first spotted 7th Feb. Blackbird, Robin, Dunnock, Blue and Great Tits, Wren and Magpie are also feeding plus at least 40 Pheasant.
Other species seen in the area but not using the free meal ticket include Song Thrush, a few Red Wing, one Fieldfare, a pair of Bullfinch, plenty of Wood pigeon, Magpies and Red kites. Finally, when out scattering the seed, a Roe buck with two does is often be seen feeding on the grass at the back of the field.