About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Get started feeding birds

Hello my name is Daphne and I just fell upon your website and I LOVE it!  I recently moved to Lake Huron and would like to start attracting birds, feeding them and giving shelter, but I have all kinds of squirrels.  I would like to get started but not sure how to feed, water and shelter these birds with squirrels.  I love bluebirds and have not seen one all year long...but enjoy watching them all....can you please guide me on how many hooks and how to separate the feeders to draw several different birds here, please! - Thank you Daphne

 Squirrel Buster with weather guard
Hello, I wrote an article before that might be helpful called: How to Begin Bird Feeding

As you know, feeders, houses, and baths come in a wide variety styles. The best way to start is to cater to the birds that already find your yard a suitable habitat.

Squirrel resistant feeders are the easiest way to feed the birds and not the squirrels. Safflower or nyjer thistle are also two bird seeds that the squirrels avoid. I have a  Brome Squirrel Buster Plus hanging from a tree hook at my house as well as suet, finch, and a safflower cylinder feeders. The squirrels leave all of those alone.

In the middle of my yard I have a Fly through feeder for all the birds and squirrels to share. I could put a baffle around the pole to keep the squirrels off, but I do enjoy watching them too.

As you continue to bird watch you may see different birds as the seasons change. The Eastern Bluebirds gather in large family flocks in woodsy areas at the end of nesting season to forage on fruit, nuts, and berries. In the spring their diet changes over to more bugs or mealworms and they are looking for more open fields to forage.

Of course water sources always attract a variety of birds. Because your area has freezing temperatures you can provide a heated birdbath for your birds. The bath remains free of ice and open to the birds to get drinks or clean their feathers.

You don’t have to start with a lot of feeders or an advanced pole system to begin bird feeding. You might just want to begin with a window feeder until you’ve learned more about the birds in your area. Window feeders are easy to maintain and bring the birds up close. I fill mine with our No-mess blend so of course there will be no mess below the feeder.

Related Articles:
What seed is best for attracting the colorful birds? http://goo.gl/SAA35
What are the differences between the Wild Birds Unlimited seed blends? http://goo.gl/lF0rr
What seeds do wild birds eat? http://goo.gl/MjUCA
When should I feed the birds? http://goo.gl/IvocS