Choosing Seed For Backyard Birds

White-Breasted Nuthatch Eating Sunflower Hearts
White-Breasted Nuthatch Eating Sunflower Hearts

When you first start feeding birds, you might think that you can just buy any birdseed mix, plop it in whatever feeder you like and a wide variety of birds will quickly come flocking. The seed bag probably has a list of all the birds that will eat the food, so all of them should show up at your feeder, right?

Well, they might if you are lucky. But it is also very possible you will wind up with a mob of birds you don’t like dominating the feeder picking through the mix and dropping seed they don’t like on the ground to go to waste. Putting the right feeder in the right location is important, but what you put into it is important too. Here are the foods I offer birds (and foods that I don’t) in my Maryland yard, followed by a list of who eats what.

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Where to Hang A Suet Feeder Part 2

Male Downy Woodpecker Eating Suet
Male Downy Woodpecker Eating Suet

My approach to offering suet to birds in my yard has evolved over the past several years. Through a lot of trial and error with feeder type and placement, I’ve learned a lot along the way. My current suet set-up has been working wonderfully for season after season and now I don’t have to stress over it at all. It just works.

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Birds & Trees: A Tree Falls in the Yard

A Large Pine Tree Falls Across the Back Yard

Each time I enter a home count in eBird, I include a note that the location is a “Suburban Wooded Back Yard.” The many mature trees in our yard are after all a part of the attraction for the birds that come here. Unfortunately over the past year or two, this description is starting to fray. Our lovely large trees keep falling in unusual numbers and each time this happens, it not only affects the yard’s human owners but also the birds and other creatures that live here. Over this past weekend another very large tree fell. This one in particular is going to have real repercussions for bird life in our back yard.

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