What is suet and what good is it?
Suet is the raw, hard fat of beef, lamb or mutton found around the loins and kidneys. Suet has a melting point of between 45 °C and 50 °C and congelation between 37 °C and 40 °C. Most suet in North America is made from beef suet.
Suet is a great addition to your backyard feeding station. There is a huge misconception that suet can't be fed all year round, but this isn't true. In nature, a Canada Jay has no problems robbing the suet or fat from carrion that has died in the wild no matter the temperature.
Suet mixed for the bird feeding market can be messy and slippery in the warmer months so look for summer suet that's mixed in a way that it doesn't melt. If you have a busy bird feeding station, it's not likely to last long enough to melt or go rancid in the heat anyhow!
But in winter it can make all the difference on our coldest days here in Southern Ontario. A seed eating songbird will eat up to half its weight or more in a day of seed to fire up its digestive process which is really their internal furnace that keeps them warm. Seed is a mix of carbs and fat, both of which are needed but it's the fat that has the slowest deepest burn that is needed to keep them warm on days you and I are running inside for blankets and buckets of hot chocolate. So while seed is absolutely a must on these freezing days, suet is even more so important. It's like a purer fuel source for warmth that is going to take less calories to find and consume in one go. It may be the difference between surviving and thriving.
We have a nice selection of suets from economy and premium at a range of price points that will make all the birds happy who come to taste test.
Check them out here.
Feeders to house suet in are here:
Woodpeckers love it if you offer feeders with tail props. Check them out here: