Some visitors to your bird feeders are a nuisance and can scare off the birds you’re trying to attract. Try these tips to discourage unwanted guests from crowding out your feeders.
How to keep grackles from stealing birdseed
- Use the style of tube feeder surrounded by a cage. Small birds can fit through the cage, but the grackles are too big to reach through.
- Use suet feeders that only allow access from the bottom. Grackles don’t like to cling upside down to feed.
How to keep squirrels out of bird feeders
- Attach a slippery, domed baffle to the pole under a feeder
- Select a feeder with ports that close when a squirrel lands on the roof of the feeder
- Try a feeder enclosed by a cage. Small birds can get through, but not the squirrels.
- Use safflower seed in your feeders. Squirrels don’t like it.
- If you can’t beat ‘em, feed ‘em. Create a squirrel zone with their own feeder stocked with nuts. Spike corn cobs on a squirrel feeder.
How to keep ants out of hummingbird feeders
- Choose feeders with an ant cup or moat on the top of the feeder. Ants are reluctant to cross the water to get to the nectar.
How to keep bees out of hummingbird feeders
- Choose a feeder made for hummingbirds. The ports are too long for bees to reach the nectar.
How to keep hawks from scaring away the birds
- Decoy owls help deter hawks which can intimidate birds when they’re in the area.
How to keep mice out of the bird seed
- Store food in dry, tight-lidded containers
- Clean up any seed spills so you won’t attract rodents
- Set up traps nearby to catch any thieves