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Old 11-14-2018, 08:51 PM
 
Location: Suburb of Chicago
17,935 posts, read 8,770,815 times
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Pennington and Wagner's are good brands and my guess is the birds can't tell the difference between the better brands.

I bought the seed with the heat one time and they weren't coming around in droves the way they usually do. Never again.

I also buy a mix with safflower seeds, and avoid sunflower seeds to keep the squirrels out of it.
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Old 11-14-2018, 11:43 PM
 
178 posts, read 473,595 times
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What kind of birds do you attract? I had two feeders, one with a cheap blend and another with niyjer seed. Goldfinches only ate the niyjer, wouldn’t even consider the other stuff. In fact they never migrated away for the winter as they seemed content with the source of food. Walmart has the cheapest niyjer in my area.



Try duncraft.com they have all kinds of specialty blends, including spicy and no waste mixes. You may have to wait for a special though if you like cheap blends in bulk.
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Old 11-15-2018, 02:13 AM
 
Location: Eugene, Oregon
7,376 posts, read 2,313,680 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mary2014 View Post
I usually visit Ace Hardware to buy a 40 lb bag of National Audubon Society Supreme Blend bird seed. Expensive, but, with a coupon it is (was) the best quality at a reasonable price- about $50.


Went to order the 40 lb size for pickup at my local Ace Hardware and it is no longer available. It is no longer available anywhere!!! It appears to have been discontinued.


So I am looking for recommendations for a replacement brand of the same quality. Any suggestions?


The Ace hardware purchasing agent at my local Ace store has suggested I try Wild Delight Sizzle Heat, which is supposed to have a spice on the seed that squirrels don't like, but, birds don't mind. Does not come in 40 lb bags. A 14lb bag is $32 and I can get a $15 coupon to try it.


Looking for suggestions on other brands that are good quality, suitable for the Delaware area birds and might come in 40 lb bags to keep the cost more reasonable.


Suggestions appreciated.
There is a so-called "wild-bird store" in our area, that is an undisguised clip-joint, selling overpriced seed to well-heeled yuppies. They charge $30. for a 20-lb bag of seed. But there's another brand, called Audubon Park, that I buy from a discount store, whenever it's on sale, at $6. for 20 lbs. It's just as good in quality and has as much millet, as the $30. brand at that other store. All the birds flock to my large feeder to gobble it down. They don't know anything about the low price I paid. Unfortunately, the non-native fox squirrels like it a lot, also.
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Old 11-16-2018, 05:04 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
1,795 posts, read 671,988 times
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^^^ Steve's got it right. Don't be duped by "quality." The birds only care about seed type. We only put out oil seed (black sunflower) and we're over run with birds-- gold finch, house finch, cardinal, blue jay, creepers, red breasted grossbill, various sparrows, mourning dove, junco and the occasional scarlet tanager or indigo bunting are regular visitors. Even the red bellied, downy & hairy woodpeckers frequently eat them in spite of readily available suet.


Occasionally the bride insists on putting out "mixed birdseed" but the birds ignore it in preference to the oil seed and I have more work to do cleaning it out before it gets moldy.
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Old 11-16-2018, 05:39 AM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
13,409 posts, read 10,748,498 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guidoLaMoto View Post
^^^ Steve's got it right. Don't be duped by "quality." The birds only care about seed type. We only put out oil seed (black sunflower) and we're over run with birds-- gold finch, house finch, cardinal, blue jay, creepers, red breasted grossbill, various sparrows, mourning dove, junco and the occasional scarlet tanager or indigo bunting are regular visitors. Even the red bellied, downy & hairy woodpeckers frequently eat them in spite of readily available suet.


Occasionally the bride insists on putting out "mixed birdseed" but the birds ignore it in preference to the oil seed and I have more work to do cleaning it out before it gets moldy.
The problem with the black oily sunflower seed is that everybody loves it! Supposedly, according to my Game Commission, a bear can smell a tablespoon of the seed one mile away. They are not the only ones; squirrels, raccoons, opossums, skunks, fox, mice, rats, and others also love the seed. Bear and squirrels will damage or destroy the bird feeders. Of course you can spice up the seed with the cayenne pepper. However, the more attractive sunflower seeds, are still more likely to get unwanted visitors. Once bear start showing up you only have one option and that is to remove all the birdfeeders.

The 'spiced' mix is the safer root to go where you can enjoy the birds for longer periods of time without the unwanted guest.
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Old 11-16-2018, 08:48 AM
 
Location: Lafayette, LA
3,290 posts, read 2,511,958 times
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Also, if you’re buying cut-rate seed from, say, Walmart, you’re paying less money, but you’re getting a lot of “filler” mixed in. Look at it closely. You’ll see pieces of sticks, little round seeds
called milo that even the squirrels don’t eat, lots of debris.
And you’re paying by the pound.
Kinda like buying bone-in steak—you’re paying for that bone that you can’t eat.
I don’t know if the lack filler in more expensive seed makes up for the difference in price, but it is a factor.
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Old 11-16-2018, 09:26 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
1,795 posts, read 671,988 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fisheye View Post
The problem with the black oily sunflower seed is that everybody loves it! Supposedly, according to my Game Commission, a bear can smell a tablespoon of the seed one mile away. ...

.

I don't have worry about that...we have Packers around here, not Bears, although they are starting to stink just as bad lately.


Good post. Good points for many readers. My feeders are located too far from the trees and too close to the house and cats to worry about varmints (much).
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Old 11-16-2018, 09:46 AM
 
Location: Swiftwater, PA
13,409 posts, read 10,748,498 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guidoLaMoto View Post
I don't have worry about that...we have Packers around here, not Bears, although they are starting to stink just as bad lately.


Good post. Good points for many readers. My feeders are located too far from the trees and too close to the house and cats to worry about varmints (much).
We had 'squirrel proof' bird feeders. My wife kept telling me the squirrels were eating all the seed at night and I kept telling her no (because squirrels sleep at night). So we had one of the infrared driveway sensors that I moved and put on our one bird feeder. We ended up taking many pictures out our the window at the nightlife: Marie's Raccoons. My wife had fun playing with the photo shop with those pictures. But when the bear came in it destroyed the feeders and then I had to quit feeding the birds and everybody else!

Our feeders were very close to our house.

Last edited by fisheye; 11-16-2018 at 10:51 AM..
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Old 11-16-2018, 10:02 AM
 
Location: Boonies of N. Alabama
2,391 posts, read 2,139,363 times
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Don't forget. It's not only the type of seed that will attract certain birds, it's your environment. If you live near woods, you'll get particular types of birds. If you live near an open field, you'll get others. Water, north, south, east, west. They all have certain habitats they prefer and the seed is only 1 factor.

Comparing someone that lives at the edge of a forest in Alabama with someone that lives near a pasture in Pennsylvania and the types of birds they're drawing in with the seed they put out is apples and burgers.
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Old 11-16-2018, 07:56 PM
 
1,456 posts, read 704,098 times
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I feed them black oil sunflower seeds, have had one bear in 25+ years. Lowe's has 40-pound bags for about $20.

We constructed a tall feeder that squirrels and deer can't get into, and that's where most of the small birds eat. I put shelled sunflower seeds in that feeder so there is nothing on the ground underneath the feeder.

I also have a couple open feeders that any animal can eat from, as I enjoy seeing squirrels and raccoons as well as birds. The open feeders are always empty by nightfall, so no rats hang around.
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