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Old 11-17-2018, 05:25 AM
 
Location: The Driftless Area, WI
1,795 posts, read 671,988 times
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The last two posts make excellent points. Not only type of food and location are important, but type of feeder also. Mourning doves won't eat up at the feeders, but prefer picking up scraps on the ground. Jays and cardinals like open platform feeders, while sparrows and finches prefer the long tube with little port holes feeders. The creepers like the little wooden gazebos. They land on the roof and creep upside down, down the little posts to get at the seeds-- their natural feeding style.
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Old 11-17-2018, 11:34 AM
 
Location: DC metropolitan area
580 posts, read 194,582 times
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Here's another data point for you...

After experimenting with different seeds and seed mixes, we decided on straight black-oil sunflower seed. We use hanging cylindrical feeders made of mesh with openings and perches for birds to extract the seeds. The squirrels have a hard time with these. We also have hanging feeders that dispense onto a platform for other birds like cardinals. The squirrels love these. They do eat a lot but the seed costs $21.99 at Southern States for 50 lbs. The squirrels are part of nature, too. An occasional raccoon or possum (?) will pull down a feeder trying to get at the seed. But I just put them back up.

These are the birds that eat black-oil sunflower seed at the house:

cardinals
Carolina chickadees
tufted titmice
blue jays
house finches
purple finches
pine siskins
American goldfinches
white-breasted nuthatches
red-bellied woodpeckers
downy woodpeckers
white-throated sparrows
rose-breasted grosbeaks

For juncos, doves, crows, we put up a platform feeder with cracked corn. The deer love this, too. Unfortunately, the house sparrows come for this as well. Cracked corn (medium grade) costs about $9 per 50 lb bag also at Southern States.
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Old 11-17-2018, 04:13 PM
 
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Another thing you might look into is hen scratch. You can get it at farm stores such as Tractor Supply. Supplement it with sunflower seeds.
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Old 11-24-2018, 03:24 PM
 
2,504 posts, read 4,483,586 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by athena53 View Post
One interesting fact: some seeds are less attractive to birds (e.g., red millet and oats) so they pick through the seeds and eat only the others, resulting in waste. Higher-grade seed mixes include more sunflower, safflower and thistle seeds.
Most hardware and big box store bird seed mixes have a lot of "junk" seeds like red millet and milo that birds don't eat, so they create a lot of waste, but people buy them because they're cheaper. It seems like the birds really go for these blends because the level of the feeder goes down so fast, but that's because a lot of the seeds are being dropped (which also attracts rodents). I like to buy my seeds at Wild Birds Unlimited because they actually know what birds in your area prefer, and none of the blends use "filler seeds."
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Old 11-24-2018, 05:46 PM
 
Location: Floribama
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Sometimes I wonder if they eat millet at all. Seems like the birds here knock it all on the ground so they can get to the good stuff.
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Old 11-25-2018, 08:05 AM
 
Location: Boonies of N. Alabama
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Quote:
Originally Posted by southernnaturelover View Post
Sometimes I wonder if they eat millet at all. Seems like the birds here knock it all on the ground so they can get to the good stuff.

The mourning dove here eat the millet.
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Old 11-25-2018, 08:14 AM
 
Location: Floribama
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Quote:
Originally Posted by writerwife View Post
The mourning dove here eat the millet.
They love the smashed pecans on my driveway too.
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Old Today, 01:18 PM
 
Location: Boonies of N. Alabama
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FYI, I've had a ton of house finch scarfing down the millet today. There's all types of seed out there but the millet is what they're after right now.
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