- 5 Best Songbird Feeders
- Things To Consider When Shopping For The Best Songbird Feeders
- How To Attract Songbirds To Your Backyard
- FAQs About Song Birds
Songbirds are always fun to attract to your yard and to watch. With the Best Songbird Feeders and setting up the proper environment, you can enjoy hours and hours of watching these beautiful birds feed in your backyard.
5 Best Songbird Feeders
- A value priced mix that attracts a wide variety of backyard birds
- Contains general purpose seeds including sunflower
- Use in Hopper or Tube Feeders
- Highest quality grains used in blending
- Made in the USA
- Attracts many beautiful perching and ground feeding Southern songbirds
- Contains seeds that Southern songbirds desire including sunflower and safflower
- Can be fed in a tube, hopper, or platform feeders
- Highest quality grains used in blending
- Made in the USA
- 5-highly nutritious foods that will attract a wide variety of birds to your backyard
- An all-natural, high-quality mix filled with the healthy proteins and fats birds crave
- Contains no fillers
- Created to attract both small and large beak colorful songbirds including cardinals, chickadees, jays and more
- A select mix of foods that will provide year-round entertainment for you and healthy energy for your backyard birds
- Hardcover Book
- Pinnington, Andrea (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 26 Pages - 08/02/2016 (Publication Date) - Firefly Books (Publisher)
- Excellent high-energy Food for year-round feeding
- Attracts Cardinals, Chickadees, Nuthatches, Woodpeckers and other colorful songbirds
- Nut & Fruit blend contains a rich mix of seeds and grains with added nut and fruit pieces.
- Pleasant cherry aroma attracts wild birds
Things To Consider When Shopping For The Best Songbird Feeders
When looking to buy the best songbird feeders, there are several characteristics of a quality bird feeder that will make your birds happy and be a good investment for years to come. Let’s discuss what these qualities are and why they matter:
Easy to clean and disassemble
According to the Blue Ridge Wildlife Center, if a bird feeder is not cleaned, it becomes a breeding ground for zoonotic diseases or diseases that can be transmitted between animals and people.
A filthy bird feeder is a health hazard to the birds who eat from it, the humans handling it, and anyone else who may come in contact with it. It is recommended that bird feeders be thoroughly cleaned approximately weekly to every two weeks, so it is important that the feeder you purchase be easy to disassemble and clean.
Efficient drainage features
Even the best songbird feeders are exposed to all the elements, it is important that the bird feeder has the ability to drain water effectively. If it does not, the seeds can become rotten and you may waste quite a bit of seed if you live in a wet climate.
If you find a bird feeder that you love that does not have the ability to drain well, consider that you will have to spend more time cleaning it and that you might use more seed due to the potential for the seed spoil if allowed to remain moist for an extended period of time.
Perches are important
A feeder with perches encourages birds to “sit and stay awhile” instead of snacking and flying off.
Cater to the birds you want to attract
As most songbird varieties have smaller beaks, a feeder made for smaller birds will be the best choice, as larger birds will not be able to feed on it.
Weatherproof materials and design
The best songbird feeders must withstand extreme heat and cold. If you purchase a high-quality bird feeder made to do this, you will enjoy watching birds occupy it for years to come.
If you purchase a low-quality bird feeder that wears out quickly from weather exposure, you will spend more money replacing it multiple times than you would have by purchasing a high-quality feeder initially.
Critter proof features
Always look for a bird feeder that has squirrel and critter proofing features. If the seed is too easy for critters to access with their little paws, they will gobble up the snacks quickly, leaving nothing for the birds!
If you purchase a feeder that provides birds access to water in addition to seed, they will frequent the feeder for a longer period of time because it makes their entire meal available; a snack and a beverage. Without water, they will leave the area more quickly because they will need to quench their thirst elsewhere. Alternatively, you could purchase a birdbath to install nearby the feeder if you prefer to keep the water separate.
Ability to serve the local’s favorite snacks
Research what your local songbird population loves to eat, and purchase the best songbird feeders that will provide that type of food. There are many different types of bird feeders, and knowing what seeds you must serve will help you narrow down your search to exactly what you need.
Animals are more likely to eat if they feel safe. Consider what area of the property would make wild feathered friends feel comfortable and safe, and plan to place the feeder there. The location may assist with the selection of the feeder as well.
Also, consider that most birds will feel more comfortable if they eat from a higher elevation where they are covered, as being close to the ground and out in the open increases vulnerability to predators.
Carefully consider if the feeder and/or the potential set up poses a hazard to the birds or any other animals that may attempt to feed on it.
For example, shepherd’s hook is quick to install and strong, however, squirrels may get their tail lodged in the middle of a double hook, causing them to sustain an injury or even lose part of their tail. While you may not want squirrels to access the feeder, you certainly would not want them to suffer such an injury.
Do not forget to check reviews on the best songbird feeders you are considering. See if any other customers feed the same varieties of birds that you do and if the feeder has been well received by those varieties.
With careful consideration and a little bit of research, you can make your yard a favorite snack stop for your feathered friends, creating many bird-watching opportunities.
How To Attract Songbirds To Your Backyard
If you want to attract songbirds to your backyard, you will find key advice helpful. Arranging your landscaping, knowing what to feed and how to offer the feed, and providing water are all ways to draw brightly colored, musical birds to your backyard. Follow these tips, along with buying the best songbird feeders, and watch beautiful birds flock to the plants and feeders in your property.
Plant a Landscape that is Diverse
To attract songbirds to your backyard, opt for a multilayer landscape that is solidly packed with an array of plants that supply food and structure throughout the year. Consider the beds and borders both vertically and horizontally. Include a wide range of plants that includes herbs, grasses, vegetables, annuals, and perennials. The seed heads of ornamental grasses and perennials draw fall songbirds that feed on the ground. They supply cover as the birds forage.
Offer a Water Source
Not all songbirds visit feeders, but all birds need water. A basic birdbath is one way to go, but moving water alerts new birds to the water source by its sound. Add a mister, dripper, or bubbler to add motion. Birdbaths should have a depth of an inch or two with a slope that is shallow. Make sure you have a pedestal bath if cats prowl the area. Clean the bath once weekly with a brush that is stiff.
Know Your Desired Songbirds
Pick up a bird book for your geographic region and peruse the birds that might visit your yard. Some even have audio options so you can hear and identify various birds. Read about the needs of those birds that particularly draw your eye or ear. This includes everything from food preferences to the types of plants in which they thrive.
Offer Appropriate Feed
Different types of feed and the best songbird feeders will draw different types of songbirds. Having learned the feeding needs of the birds you wish to bring to your backyard, prepare feed, and feeders appropriately. Some birds have highly specific needs and having the best songbird feeders to match their feeding needs is also important.
This is the most popular among bird seeds. It attracts a wide variety of birds to feast at your feeders. Cardinals, blue jays, finches, chickadees, sparrows, and nuthatches all love it. If you are new to birding in your backyard, black-oil sunflower seeds are an excellent starting point.
Another favored option for beginners, seed mixes are popular for their penchant of attracting many different bird types. These tend to be messy, however, because birds will pick over the unwanted seed types, tossing them away. De-hulled mixes that are touted as no-mess will cut down on the litter below the best songbird feeders. This mess is picked over by juncos, sparrows, and doves. Watch out for squirrels, though.
Suet is essentially a cake of animal fat. It is an essential source of protein that is healthy for birds, particularly in winter. When food is scant in those months, suet can be a lifeline for many of your yard’s birds. This feed source is often mixed with seeds, served through special suet cages.
Thistle or Nyjer
A small seed that is high in quality, thistle draws goldfinches in flocks. It requires a special finch feeder that boasts smaller holes. Bright buntings and reddish house finches also enthuse over these feeders, so prepare for a flurry of pretty colors.
Many bird species remain on the ground to feed, seldom landing on feeders. They will feast on the seeds that have been cast down from feeders. If there is leaf litter, they will also scratch around in that. Leaf litter provides a natural habitat for a variety of insects, giving birds such as robins, thrashers, and towhees quality snack sources as they hunt for insects and grubs.
This sugar water is provided in a hummingbird feeder. Hummingbirds and orioles delight in nectar. Hummingbirds are often bright birds with touches of iridescence that are a joy to watch buzzing about.
Smorgasbord for Birds
Many other types of foods will draw songbirds. Try peanuts, peanut butter, millet, cracked corn, oranges, and pieces of apples. The first two particularly draw jays, titmice, and magpies. Enjoy watching the songbirds feast and thrive in your backyard.
Maintain Feeders and Houses
Clean out old nests from birdhouses and clean even the best songbird feeders regularly. Rake the litter below the feeder to eliminate soggy seed that could grow potentially deadly mold. Old nests and mold can deter songbirds or be hazardous to their health.
Keep Plants Native and Nutritious
Native plants provide songbirds with a balanced diet of fruits and seeds ripening at times that are critical. Also, the more natives planted, the more insects you draw. This will entice a wider variety of songbirds. Avoid potentially dangerous pesticides, fertilizers, and herbicides.
Plant Shrubs and Trees
Shrubs and trees offer shelter from storms and predators. They also provide nesting locations. Trees bearing nuts and fruits, like the flowering crabapple, also provide food to a variety of songbirds. Include several specimens to have as much variety as possible. Remember to have a minimum of one thorny species to provide perches that are protected. Dense evergreens offer cover in winter.
These tips provide a setting that is ideal for drawing songbirds. Have a backyard that is bright with flitting forms filling the air with their songs by paying attention to what you plant, how you set up feeders, and what to feed.
FAQs About Song Birds
What Kind Of Seeds Do Song Birds Prefer?
Black oil sunflower seeds are a favorite with songbirds. Nyjer seed, sunflower kernels, canola seed, and safflower seed are other types of seed that these birds prefer.
Keep in mind that they are attracted to seed that varies in color. So, if you put out black seeds like Nyjer seed in your feeder, mix in some seed that’s lighter in color with it. Nyjer and safflower seeds would be a good combination to start with.
When it comes to finding seed that these birds prefer, you can either purchase the individual types of seed listed above and mix them. Or you can purchase a bag of premade birdseed that contains the seed they like along with filler seed. A bag of premade seed may be less expensive than buying individual types of seed, but the birds are likely going to ignore the filler seed from a premade bag.
Do I Need To Clean My Song Bird Feeder And How Do I Do It?
Yes. It’s important to clean your bird feeder to kill any germs or bacteria left behind by the multiple birds that visit.
In order to clean your feeder, you have to take it apart first. (Be sure to take note of how the parts go back together as you disassemble it.) Next, handwash your feeder with hot water and a mixture of bleach and water. The mixture should be ½ cup of bleach and 16 ounces of water.
Be sure to wear rubber gloves as you wash each part of your bird feeder, so you don’t get any bacteria or bleach mixture on your skin.
After washing and rinsing each part of the bird feeder, set them out on the countertop to air dry. When they are completely dry, put them back together and refill it with fresh seed.
As a note, before putting the parts back together, shake each one to be sure no water is left behind. Water that is left behind can cause mildew inside the little crevices of your bird feeder.
Should I Stop Feeding Song Birds During The Summer Or Winter?
The answer to this question is a definite no. These birds need to eat year-round just like all the other birds around your neighborhood!
You can adjust the menu for your birds as the seasons change. For instance, in the summer you can try different combinations of their favorite seed in your feeder.
Alternatively, you can offer them suet in the cold weather months, so they have something to build up their energy when the temperatures drop.
How Can I Keep Squirrels Off My Song Bird Feeders?
If you’ve ever had a bird feeder before you know that squirrels are big fans of birdseed. Just one squirrel can take a lot of the supply of seed away from your birds.
Luckily, there are some tricks that can discourage squirrels from visiting your feeders.
One way to discourage squirrels from eating your birdseed is to purchase a squirrel proof pole on which to set your bird feeder. These poles are designed to make it impossible for squirrels to climb up to the feeder. They may try to climb the pole a couple of times, but will eventually give up.
Another trick is to place your feeder away from trees. In many cases, squirrels jump from a tree branch to a feeder in order to access the birdseed. So, hanging it near a patio or deck away from trees is a smart idea.
Sprinkle some hot pepper in the area of your bird feeder. Squirrels don’t like the scent of hot pepper so this may be enough to discourage them from visiting.
Setting up a separate feeder with food that appeals to squirrels is another idea.
Sometimes if a squirrel has its own food source, its focus will remain on that allowing your birds to enjoy the seed.
Should I Offer Song Birds Water Via A Birdbath?
Yes. Putting a birdbath on your patio or near your bird feeder is a great idea. These birds need water year-round, not just during the hot weather months. Be sure to change the water each day and clean it once per week.
You can clean your birdbath using mild soap and a soft cloth. Be sure to rinse all of the soap out of the birdbath before refilling it with fresh water. You can dress it up by putting a portable solar fountain in it. Many singing birds like to drink from a supply of water that’s in motion.
If you plan to leave your birdbath out year-round and you live in a climate where it gets really cold, you can purchase a heater to keep the water from freezing.
Lastly, the chirping and singing of these birds are sure to lift your mood. Once they discover your bird feeder, you’re sure to see some regular visitors returning to see what kind of seed you put out that day!
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