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Information About Attracting & Feeding Birds

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NOTE: Seedland no longer sells bird feed. For information about seed to plant and grow for birds and other wildlife visit www.wildlifeseeds.com.  To purchase or price wildlife seed for food plots see our online store Seedland.com.Bird on Branch

There is a great variety of bird species across the United States. Some species stay within our country's borders year round while others migrate internationally each year. When you begin to attract birds to your area, you will find different species visiting your feeders at different times of the year.

We have provided two pages with pictures and information on the most common bird species in the USA, the links are above.

Attracting Birds To Your Property

Anyone can attract birds to their property by following some simple guidelines. Birds have basic needs that must be met in order for them to feel comfortable in your environment. First, they need to feel secure. Make sure that there is plenty of cover in the way of leafy shrubs and trees as this gives the birds a place to hide if a predator should arrive on the scene. A mixture of deciduous and evergreen shrubs will give them a hiding place all year round.

Next, they need water. Offer it in a container shallow enough that they can bathe in, and keep it clean so they can drink it. Birds need a constant food supply. Birds eat a wide variety of seeds and insects. Use several types of feeders to attract a wider variety of birds to your location. Fill each feeder with a different mixture of feed to meet their needs.

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Seed Varieties: There are several varieties of seed that are used to feed birds. Standard Wild Bird Feeds contain a mixture of the following seeds:

  • White Proso Millet - small, nutritious grain easily digested by birds. Contains essential amino acids.
  • Wheat and Milo (sorghum) - high in nutritional value and favored by a large variety of smaller birds.
  • Thistle (Niger) Seed - high in protein and fat. Thistle Seed does not resemble the familiar weed.
  • Black Sunflower Seed (Confectionery) - contains oils essential for healthy birds.

Seedland sells seeds for planting food plots for birds.

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Tips For Attracting & Feeding Wild Birds

Placing Your Feeders: Be sure to use sturdy, well-built feeders and hang them with sturdy wire from a pole or tree limb; or mount them on sturdy poles. Place your feeders near some shrubbery to make the birds visiting feel safe. You can put your feeders near windows or an area you frequent to enjoy them even more.

Keeping A Clean House: Keep feeders clean to reduce the spreading of diseases among the birds. Wash feeders regularly with soap and warm water. Clean any seed that sticks to the bottom or corners of feeders. Change out any seed that may be too old or that begins to mold. Change hummingbird nectar weekly in cooler weather and twice a week in warm weather. Also clean suet feeders often with soap and hot water.

Attracting A Wide Variety: Different species of birds require different types of feed. To attract the widest variety of birds to your back yard during the year, set up several types of feeders with different types of feeds. Fill a hanging feeder with sunflower seed, set up a tray feeder with mixed seeds and cracked corn, put out a suet feeder, and hang a hummingbird feeder. Don't forget the water. All birds need water to drink and to bathe. Keep it filled daily with fresh water, and keep it clean. Cleanliness discourages mosquito larvae from developing and hatching and keeps the birds healthier.

Types of Feeders: A hanging feeder with sunflower seed attracts chickadees, titmice, nuthatches, cardinals, American goldfinches, purple and house finches, pine siskins, grosbeaks, sparrows, and many others. A tray feeder filled with mixed seeds and cracked corn attracts cardinals, juncos, sparrows, mourning doves, pigeons, jays, crows, blackbirds, bobwhites and others. Keeping a tray feeder away from the hanging feeder will keep conflicts between aggressive birds and the more timid birds at a minimum. A suet feeder attracts woodpeckers, chickadees, titmouse, nuthatches, mockingbirds, and more.

SquirrelSquirrels: Discourage squirrels from raiding your feeders by placing them at least five feet high and eight feet away from any potential springboards such as tree trunks and limbs. You can use squirrel baffles on your poles or wires to discourage them as well. Squirrels can also be distracted by cracked corn put out away from your feeders, or you may wish to put up a squirrel feeder in a distant location from the feeders

Water: Birds need plenty of fresh, clean water for drinking and bathing. If you keep a good supply of water, you may attract birds that don't normally come to the feeders. Be sure you set up your bird bath to be shallow enough for the smaller birds, yet deep enough for the larger birds. Set it up close to a place to perch as wet birds do not fly well and need a place of refuge from predators. Water should be changed frequently. In winter, use a heated bird bath or add warm water daily. Do not use glycerin as it causes the birds' feathers to mat.

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