Dutch bird protection society Vogelbescherming is urging people to put out a variety of foodstuffs to keep birds healthy and well-fed during the cold snap.
As well as seeds, fat balls and peanuts, birds also appreciate pieces of apple, and dried grubs, the organisation says. Some like to eat food hanging in trees, but others like the ground or a raised surface, so a mixture of locations will also attract a variety of birds.
Water too, is essential, but without added salt or sugar to stop it from freezing. Birds will also pick at the snow to take in liquids.
The low temperatures will also cause problems for birds that don’t come into people’s gardens. Storks, for example, are now staying in the Netherlands for the winter because of the mild temperatures, but have been hit by the far colder weather.
And there are also fears for the kingfisher, known as the ijsvogel, or ice bird, in Dutch, which relies on open water for its food.
City ecologist Geert Timmermans told broadcaster NOS that just seven of the 60 known kingfisher couples in Amsterdam are thought to have survived the frost of 2018.
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