All that glitters is not gold for wildlife

Vanessa Amaral-Rogers,

Friday 1 December 2017

Robin in snow

With Christmas just around the corner, thoughts excitedly turn to the upcoming visit from Santa Claus. It’s no wonder folks want to put out food for Santa’s reindeer helpers and this year the RSPB has created the perfect recipe for Rudolph

Not only does it have a high calorific content - perfect fuel for flying high and keeping warm in the wintery months – but it’s also nature friendly (so it doesn’t matter if the birds eat most of it). And oh what fun it is to make it with the children! 

Mix up the following nice ingredients, but skip the naughty items. Sprinkle into a tray or bowl on Christmas Eve and the reindeer (and the birds) will have a festive treat.


Raw porridge oats and sunflower seeds can make up the bulk of the reindeer chow, and they’re great all-rounders for fat and carbohydrate content. Nyjer seeds will add some darker colour and this tiny, oil rich seed is highly nutritious and perfect for keeping up energy. If you want to add some more colour, consider adding blueberries or apple.


It may be tempting to make the reindeer food sparkle, but please don’t use glitter and sequins.. Anything made from plastic can cause stomach problems for most animals if eaten. Glitter is also a microplastic; the pieces are so small and so could cause a problem for the environment for a long time. Cake sprinkles or edible glitter should also be avoided as they tend to contain e-numbers.

To buy some of the seed mixes suggested as well as all sorts of other Christmas goodies for wildlife, visit

For further information and to arrange an interview, please contact:

Vanessa Amaral-Rogers: 01767 693517 /

Last Updated: Tuesday 28 August 2018

Tagged with: Country: UK Topic: Birds and wildlife