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.

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

What time of day do birds feed

I noticed some birds feed at different times than others. Cardinals first and finches later in the day. Shouldn't they all be early birds to get the most food?

Very good observations! When birds first wake up they need to build up energy reserves lost the previous night. A lot of birds like the cardinals are nesting and raising young in the spring and early summer. This takes a lot of energy so you might see them first thing in the morning. But goldfinches can appreciate these lazy days because they don't begin to nest until the end of summer.

Weather also plays a roll in the activity patterns at the feeders. Bad weather makes it harder to forage for natural foods. You may see more birds popping in for a treat during rainy, windy weathers or when temperatures rise to extremes. Whereas on a good day you may just see them breakfast and dinner because they are out foraging the rest of the time.

Birds seem to take turns at the feeders. While a flock of blackbirds descends to feast, cardinals may perch in the trees to wait for an opening or chickadees may slip in the mix and quickly slip out. Doves can hang out anytime, harassing the chipmunks or just sunning themselves or digesting food they've cleaned up off the ground.

To provide the most beneficial foods to meet birds' nutritional needs, the birds in Michigan should be fed Sunflower, White Proso Millet, Safflower, Peanuts, Nyjer® Thistle, nectar, mealworms, and suet.

Like you, I love to bird watch. The delight of seeing so many active and energetic birds at your feeders makes feeding the birds a real joy. By providing just a few simple things, such as a variety of fresh foods, clean water and shelter, you can create the perfect refuge in your yard that is attractive to more and more birds.

Related articles:
- Can birds become dependent on bird feeders? http://goo.gl/GZYpke
- Do we stop feeding suet in the summer? http://bit.ly/GKWSRt
- Feeding Baby Birds http://bit.ly/GSHKwY
- Attracting Michigan Songbirds http://bit.ly/GKYw5q

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