AS Christmas Eve approaches, it is nearly time to get your reindeer food ready to scatter around the garden – but what should we be feeding these magical creatures? And more importantly, what foods are safe for the birds too?

The RSPCA has issued some suggestions of what to feed the reindeer, and has advised not to use pre bought food with glitter to make sure we are looking after the wildlife around us.

Reindeer food mix

  • Wild bird seed mix – sunflower seeds, naked rolled oats, dried mealworms, yellow millet, kibbled peanuts and black sunflower seeds
  • Rolled oats
  • Dried fruit, such as cranberries (but don’t use grapes or sultanas if you have a dog)
  • Dried insects
  • Grated cheese
  • And a hint of chilli powder to stop it being stolen by rodents and squirrels!

A spokesperson for the charity said: “On Christmas Eve, as Father Christmas is rushing from house to house to deliver presents to all the good girls and boys, his reindeer helpers often need a quick snack to keep them going on their busiest night of the year.

“You don't need to go and buy them special food. Often the food you can buy in the shops is full of glitter, which is very bad for flying reindeer and other garden wildlife. The chances are you have just what they love in your store cupboards anyway!”

For more seasonal advice, visit the RSPCA website.