So, which ones are best?
The answer depends highly on the types of birds you want to attract. As most birders know, feeding behaviour differs by species and certain feeders work to attract certain types of birds. Moreover, maintenance requirements vary between feeders such as the length of time it takes to clean and refill with food.
Here’s some guidance for choosing the right feeder styles for your backyard this summer:
Tray or Platform Feeders
Tray or Platform Feeders are perhaps the simplest in feeder design – holding seeds on a flat surface that birds can perch on as they feed. These feeders are effortless to clean and allow an unobstructed view of birds from any angle. Tray or Platform Feeders also attract the widest variety of birds because the design replicates ground feeding.
The downfall? This design offers no protection against the elements, so look for feeders with mesh bottoms that can promote drainage and allow bird droppings to fall away from seed.
If you want to ensure that more colourful birds like Finches, Cardinals and Jays visit your feeder try Armstrong Wild Bird Food in Jays or Brilliance. Comprised of seeds like Black Oil Sunflower and Peanuts, these blends will keep a variety of vivid birds from all regions coming back for more.
Northern Cardinals, Chickadees and House Finches are just some of the birds that flock to these feeders! Hopper Feeders are usually hung from above or mounted on a pole, and allow a large supply of seed to be dispersed through the bottom onto a small tray for feeding. It also protects seeds fairly well against weather conditions and bird droppings, and can hold enough seed to last for several days – making them very convenient for birders.
It’s hard to beat a tube style feeder! These feeders can handle seeds of any variety – from large sunflower seeds to petite mixes – and can keep seed fairly protected from the elements. Tube Feeders are typically hung and allow birds to feed through small metal ports. And they have small perches that most song and perching birds are attracted to!
To give perching and song birds even more reason to stick around this summer, we recommend our wild bird food in Favourite Finch and Sweet Songs as it’s made from all the nuts and dried berries that these birds love!
Installing a Window Feeder is a great solution for any birder who enjoys extreme close-up views of birds! Its versatility allows it to be mounted on any window in the house making it the easiest of feeders to clean and fill, as well as the safest in terms of preventing window collisions. The downside? Birds tend to stand directly in the seed while feeding, so Window Feeders need to be refilled and cleaned daily.
Armstrong’s Professional Advice
Make sure that you keep your bird feeders full all year round. You may find that some species will visit more than others throughout the year, but if your feeder is always full and well taken care of, the birds will keep coming back for more!