Beat bird food sales lows by gaving customers better advice, say bird protection groups and retailers.
Multiple retailer Pets at Home says warm weather and the poor economy has meant bird food sales are at a "record low".
But Royal Society for the Protection of Birds representative Claire Thomas said feeding birds cheaper alternatives to bought foods could be dangerous: “Despite meaning well, people do need to be careful that they are not feeding wild birds the wrong food as they can be doing more harm than good.
“For example, milk is one of the worst things to give to any bird. A bird's stomach is not designed to digest milk and it can cause serious stomach upsets, or even death. Birds can, however, digest fermented dairy products such as cheese. Mild grated cheese can be a good way of attracting wild birds to your garden.”
Pets at Home added that bread had little nutritional for birds, leftover cooked porridge is very dangerous as it can glue a bird’s beak together when it dries and cooking fat which can damage feathers and is a breeding ground for bacteria.
Pets at home's Maeve Moorcroft said: “Specialist bird food, fat balls and peanuts are best as they contain the right kind of nutrients that will keep wild birds happy and healthy.”
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