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cardinal on bird feeder tray If you enjoy the sights and sounds of birds around your home and garden, one of the easiest ways to attract them is to put up a bird feeder.  For anyone who works from home or is housebound, watching birds can be a happy occupation.  Children also enjoy watching and identifying birds from a nearby window.  It is interesting to observe the various bird species and their plumage colors, and to watch the birds' activities and interactions.  Some birds, like starlings and blue jays, tend to monopolize the feeders and chase other birds away, while other birds hop around and eat seed dropped on the ground.  Some birds, such as hummingbirds and warblers, appear in certain seasons, which may affect the feeder and food that you use.

A Yellow-Rumped Warbler Eats Birdseed at a Bird Feeder

There are several basic styles of feeders available for different types and sizes of birds; therefore, it is important to research the bird species that you will be trying to attract.  In the end, you may decide to install several different bird feeders to attract a variety of birds to your yard.

  • A tray or platform feeder is a basic form of feeder that is a flat raised surface.  It is easily accessible and attracts many types of birds.  However, because it offers no protection from the environment, it also may attract squirrels and chipmunks, as well as roaming pets.  It is a good idea to provide some sort of roof when using a tray feeder, and remember to change the seed often, as it gets soiled from the birds standing directly on it to feed.
  • woodpecker on house bird feeder A hopper or house feeder is like a platform feeder with walls and a roof, forming an enclosure.  It keeps the seeds cleaner than a platform feeder and protects better against the elements.  However, it is still attractive to squirrels and must be cleaned out often to prevent seeds from growing musty.  House feeders can be pole mounted or suspended.
  • A window feeder is perfect for attracting small birds for close-up viewing.  Window feeders are usually suction-cupped to a window and attract finches, sparrows, chickadees, and titmice.  Again, the birds stand in this kind of feeder, so the food must be changed often.
  • Tube feeders are hollow cylinders with multiple feeding ports and perches.  They are relatively inexpensive and tend to attract many types of birds.  Usually made of plastic, they are a bit more squirrel resistant.  A plastic dome can be added to the tube feeder, allowing smaller birds access and barring squirrels and larger birds.
  • A suet feeder is a wire-mesh cage or plastic mesh bag that holds suet or suet mixture.  It can be nailed or tied to a tree, suspended, or smeared into knotholes in the trunk.
  • hummingbird feeder A hummingbird feeder is a special kind of feeder that contains artificial nectar or a sugar solution.  The feeder is usually red in color, to attract the birds.  It is made of plastic or glass, with a saucer and plastic flowers with bee-guards, which keep bees and other insects away from the sugar solution.

Ornithologists and others who appreciate birds will often attract birds by planting a garden or landscaping the area around their bird feeder.  A spotting scope or pair of binoculars may be used to watch birds enjoy the idyllic bird feeder setting.  On Birdfeeders.us, we feature easy access to a selection of bird feeders and backyard birdwatching resources.

Shop for Bird Feeders

  • Birdfeeding.com
    This site features a selection of bird feeders, thistle feeders, and bird feeding accessories.
    www.Birdfeeding.com
  • Wild Birds Forever
    Visit "A Nature Store at Your Fingertips!" for all your birdfeeding needs.
    www.BirdsForever.com
  • Duncraft
    This site provides solutions for the birds - bird feeders, birdhouses, birdbaths, birdseed.
    www.Duncraft.com
  • Bird Watchers
    Find bird feeders, binoculars and field guides as well as bird houses and birding products.
    www.BirdWatchers.com

Birding Resources

  • All About Birds
    Find an excellent birding guide and resource from the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.
    www.AllAboutBirds.org
  • Visual Resources for Ornithology
    Here you will find a comprehensive collection of bird photographs for scientific and public use.
    VIREO.ANSP.org
  • Guide to Bird Feeding
    Find tips for attracting birds and observing them in your backyard garden.
    www.NorthwestNatureShop.com
  • Great Backyard Bird Count
    This website provides comprehensive guide to bird education, bird tracking, and birding information.
    GBBC.BirdCount.org

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