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longgone's avatar

How can I get birds to feed and nest in my backyard?

Asked by longgone (14033points) February 20th, 2018

I’ve been putting out store-bought birdseed, hanging it from branches. There are birds all around, but they don’t get close enough to eat. How can I lure them closer? What might be keeping them away?

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15 Answers

janbb's avatar

Try lumps of suet. Different kinds of seed? A small bird bath? Is there a dog or cat in your neighborhood that might be scaring them away?

LuckyGuy's avatar

Birds like some form of cover when they feed. it protects them from flying predators like hawks.
If you put it near a shrub or under a tree with low branches.

kritiper's avatar

Install bird feeders that cater to the birds you want to visit. Plant bushes and trees that provide excellent cover for nesting birds.

Call_Me_Jay's avatar

I am surprised birds (or squirrels) can resist. I’ve always been amazed by how quickly they find new feeders.

My favorite are finch feeders. Only birds with thin vertical beaks can extract the food, so we get finches and cardinals, and the squirrels don’t hog the food.

Zaku's avatar

It depends on the type of bird, what type of food they like, where they look for it, how/where they eat it. When you get the right type and one finds it, depending on the type of bird, be ready for bird city, including possibly them flying into the windows of your house (even when shut, likely hurting themselves).

A good bird store salesperson should be able to help you matching food and feeders to the birds you have or want.

CWOTUS's avatar

Birds in Connecticut are pretty particular about the birdseed that they will eat. Unless it’s non-GMO, gluten-free, fair-trade and a non-store brand (oh, they will mock you all day for generic “BIRDSEED”), they won’t even glance at it.

They also prefer distilled water for bathing.

SergeantQueen's avatar

Flowers!! and maybe look into the type of birds are in your area and what they usually like or are attracted to. Pick your favorite few birds and focus on them rather than be super general. But flowers could help to I would think. There’s butterfly gardens so I’m sure there’s bird gardens =)

CWOTUS's avatar

Oh, and don’t try to pet them on their beaks. It may be okay for dogs, but I know for a fact that birds don’t like it.

longgone's avatar

Thanks, everyone. I’ll try all that and I’ll keep you posted. There are lots of cats around (and our dog, but he’s not outside much at the moment cause we haven’t got a fence yet) maybe the feathered people just need some more encouragement.

janbb's avatar

^^ Or the cats some discouragement?

rojo's avatar

Had a friend who lived in the desert and that was into hawks and other raptors. She found the best way to attract them to her place was to first attract the songbirds with feeders and nesting boxes.

longgone's avatar

^ Noooo...

longgone's avatar

One bird has eaten! The others remain out of reach. Still trying.

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longgone's avatar

It’s a regular feeding frenzy these days. Thanks! :]

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