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Want To Attract Songbirds? Good Seed Makes All the Difference!

Updated on September 11, 2011

Bring Color and Song to Your Yard!

Title: blue_jay.jpg ~ License: Morgue File ~ Photographer: click
Title: blue_jay.jpg ~ License: Morgue File ~ Photographer: click
Title: Stance ~ License: Attribution License ~ Photographer: davedehetre
Title: Stance ~ License: Attribution License ~ Photographer: davedehetre
Title: Male House Finch ~ License: Attribution License ~ Photographer: quinet
Title: Male House Finch ~ License: Attribution License ~ Photographer: quinet

Take Good Care of Your Feathered Friends!

Feeding songbirds at your window or in your yard is a lot of fun and can provide many hours of joy. Beautiful, colorful songbirds fill the air with song and the trees with natural ornamentation. In order to attract lots of pretty songbirds, you must be sure you are feeding them their favorites! Of course, you don’t want to attract just one or two kinds of birds, so you’ll want to put out a lot of different kinds of seed.

One seed that most birds love is black oil sunflower seed. It's really nutritious and gives songbirds lots of zip to live healthy happy lives and have something to sing about! Bigger birds like Cardinals and Jays especially like these larger seeds. These bigger birds also like peanuts and some larger grains.

Little songbirds like purple finches, house finches and small beaked birds like doves prefer smaller seeds, but they’ll still enjoy sunflower seed when they can. What they really like is millet, and luckily, you can find this in good finch blends. They also like a very oily kind of seed called Nyger that provides them with a lot of nourishment.

Here are a 5 top tips to help you get the best quality when you buy bird seed:

  1. Always read the label! Some cheap seed has ingredients like wheat and milo. Birds don’t like that, so there’s no sense getting it. Get feed that has Nyger, nuts, millet, sunflower seed and cracked corn.
  2. Check the expiration date! Don’t buy seed that is in old dusty bags. Really, it’s best to buy your seed loose if you can. Many garden centers will allow you to buy seed by the pound. That way you know exactly what you’re getting.
  3. Buy packaged seed in clear plastic bags! If you have to buy seed already bagged up, at least be sure you can see it. Watch out for dirt, dust and mold in the bags!
  4. Don’t buy “squirrel repellent” seed! That won’t work anyway, and whatever is in it to repel squirrels will probably repel or harm birds, too!
  5. If you want to deter squirrels, get feeders that will deter them. This will work a lot better than using squirrel repellent food.

Let’s Talk About Feeders!

Different kinds of birds and different kinds of seed need different kinds of feeders. Be sure you buy the right feeder for the right feed. For example, birds like Jays and Woodpeckers like to have a solid block of nuts, corn, and big seed pressed with lard or some other kind of rich oil and offered in a sort of cage that they can cling to and pull the goodies out. Little perching songbirds that like small seed like to have a cylinder feeder with lots of feeding stations and a perch at each one. Ask at your garden center or do a little online research to find just the right feeder.

Just think, if you feed the songbirds all year, at Christmas time, you can decorate your yard with songbirds and feeders and enjoy your very own natural choir of carolers!


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    • SallyTX profile image

      Sally Branche 5 years ago from Only In Texas!

      Thanks! It really depends on what kinds of birds you have in your area. Birds like cardinals and jays seem to like bigger seed, such as sunflower seed. Seems like the finches and sparrows prefer the smaller seed. Doves seem to like that better, too. ;D

    • moonlake profile image

      moonlake 5 years ago from America

      We use only the black oily feed. If we try anything else they won't eat it. Enjoyed reading your hub.

    • profile image

      paddyboy60 6 years ago

      Very nice hub! I love feeding the birds through the winter months.