Birds are often hungry this time of year. For many of us, the sight of birds eating what we have provided for them is deeply satisfying: their joyful feathers and flight give a lift to our own winter-weary hearts. When we learn which foods are most appealing to different bird species we can give the birds already in our area a special treat, or we may attract more of a particular kind to our feeders. Either way, the birds will be happy!
Here is a list of the top three favorite foods of many common backyard bird species.
Pigeons, Doves: Millet, cracked corn, wheat.
Hummingbirds: Plant nectar, small insects, sugar solution.
Woodpeckers: Suet, meat scraps, sunflower hearts.
Jays: Peanuts, sunflower seed, suet.
Crows, Magpies, Nutcrackers: Meat scraps, suet, cracked corn.
Titmice, Chickadees: Peanut kernels, sunflower seeds, suet.
Nuthatches: Suet, suet mixes, sunflower hearts and seed.
Wrens, Creepers: Suet, suet mixes, peanut butter.
Mockingbirds, Thrashers, Catbirds: Halved apples, chopped fruits, baked goods.
Robins, Bluebirds, other Thrushes: Suet, suet mixes, mealworms.
Kinglets: Suet, suet mixes, baked goods.
Waxwings: Berries, chopped fruits, canned peas.
Warblers: Suet, suet mixes, fruits.
Tanagers: Suet, fruits, sugar solution.
Cardinals, Grosbeaks: Sunflower seed, safflower seed, cracked corn.
Towhees, Juncos: Millet, sunflower seed, cracked corn.
Sparrows, Buntings: Millet, sunflower hearts, black oil sunflower seed.
Orioles: Halved oranges, apples, berries.
Finches, Siskins: thistle (niger), sunflower hearts, black oil sunflower seed