James Fisher has written that the first person recorded as feeding wild birds was the sixth century monk Saint Serf of Fife who tamed a robin by feeding it. In the harsh winter of 1890-91 in Britain national newspapers asked people to put out food for birds. In 1910 in the United Kingdom, Punch magazine declared that feeding birds was a "national pastime." Bird feeding has grown into the United States' second most popular hobby behind gardening. To celebrate the bird feeding hobby, February was named National Bird-Feeding Month by congressional decree in 1994.
Bird feeding is typically thought of as an activity of bird enthusiasts. People who feed wild birds often attempt to attract birds to suburban and domestic locations. This requires setting up a feeding station and supplying bird food. The food might include seeds, peanuts, bought food mixes, fat, kitchen scraps and suet. Additionally, a bird bath and grit (sand), that birds store in their crops to help grind food as an aid to digestion, can be provided.
Feeding bread to waterfowl at parks, lakes and rivers is also a popular activity.
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