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, February 28, 2015

The Cautious Cardinal

We have a lot of cardinals and none of them like the new feeder we purchased. How do I get them back? We haven't switched birdseed blends or anything. The only difference is the feeder.

The Northern Cardinals are one of the most cautious feeder birds in Michigan. While a Black-capped Chickadees or House Sparrows may investigate a new feeder even before you have left the area, a cardinal may take months to become comfortable with a new situation.

I have heard this comment over and over about wanting to attract cardinals and then when you buy the perfect feeder and fill it with the best seed, the cardinals just look at it funny and pick up leftovers from the ground.

My suggestion is to be patient. The cautious cardinal will eventually join the other scrappier birds at your feeder. It may take a few weeks or even a few months.

It is alright to scatter a little seed below the feeder to encourage them to the area and watch the other birds. You will see them alight on the feeder a few times only to jump off quickly. This is normal. Give them a chance, maybe even several chances before they become regulars at a new feeder.

Related Articles:
Why chickadees are so friendly http://goo.gl/Og59lw
Northern Cardinal Fun Facts http://bit.ly/twE6NV 

How the Northern Cardinal bird was named http://bit.ly/tSKZYs
Cardinal Bird Feeders Made in the USA: http://bit.ly/qXJPFM
How to Attract Cardinals: http://bit.ly/pjh7mO
What can I feed the cardinals to make them redder? http://bit.ly/rAArXw 

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