Icelandic residents urged to help birds in cold weather

Icelandic ornithologists have appealed to the media, asking them to remind people of the importance of feeding garden birds during extended cold snaps like the one currently gripping the country.

According to RÚV it is particularly important for birds like redwings and starlings to be fed with fats and meat waste. They also like apple. Snow buntings like regular wild bird food best, cheaply available in most Icelandic supermarkets.

Newer species living in Iceland, such as the Eurasian blackbird and the waxwing, also enjoy feeding in gardens when people leave food out for them.

The Icelandic Met Office is forecasting ongoing cold for the rest of the week with temperatures in some places falling to a remarkably low -20°C. A duty meteorologist told RÚV, however, that extended periods of cold weather at this time of year are not uncommon. The temperature could dip to -10°C in Reykjavík and conditions are icy all over the country. At the time of writing no above-zero temperatures were expected at any Icelandic weather station in the foreseeable future. It is more common for winter weather to regularly swing from warm, windy and rainy to cold, clear and still. This is because northerly winds in winter bring dry Arctic air and southerly/southwesterly winds usually bring storms.