Having the best bird feeder for a specific species allows you to attract your favorite bird around the garden. It also depends upon the nectar or seed that you use.
You’ll find yourself overwhelmed while searching for the best bird feeder with many types. You’ll come across platform feeders, window feeders, hopper feeders, tube feeders, suet feeders, thistle feeders, and many more.
Therefore, we have compiled this guide that would help you in making an informed decision. When you have the right kind of feed and the feeder for it, you can enjoy bird feeding to your favorite birds.
What types of birds do you wish to attract?
Every bird lover has one species that they love and every birder has an arch-nemesis that simply refuses to enter the garden, house, feeder, or bath.
But there are various measures that you can take to attract different birds into your yard. The following steps will ensure that you don’t have to wait long for your new visitor.
Popular birds to attract
The most popular birds a bird watcher prefers in the garden are often the most colorful too. These birds are lyrical and unusual as well. Some of them are:
- Black-capped Chickadees
- American Goldfinches
- Baltimore Orioles
- Black-headed Grosbeaks
- Cedar Waxwings
- Carolina Wrens
- Evening Grosbeaks
- Eastern Bluebirds
- Indigo Buntings
- Gray Catbirds
- Painted Buntings
- Northern Cardinals
- Purple Martins
- Rufous Hummingbirds
- Rose-breasted Grosbeaks
- Scarlet Tanagers
- Yellow Warblers
- White-breasted Nuthatch
- Tree Swallows
Some of these birds are not that difficult to lure in your garden, but others might take months even if you make the best efforts. (1)
How to attract a specific kind of bird?
With some simple steps you can attract a specific species of birds:
- You need to check a species range and habitat. For example, if you live in California, then you cannot lure Eastern Bluebirds into your garden. And the reason is that you are far away from this species’ habitat.
- All birds don’t have the same feeding habits. If you have Nyjer seeds, this is a good option for the Goldfinches but not for the Rufous Hummingbirds. Therefore, learn about the different food sources that you need to consider to lure different birds.
- Properly landscape your yard because it needs to be an oasis for the birds. It needs to be their reliable sanctuary where they can find shelter and food. Therefore, you need to create different pockets for birds and make the landscaping bird-friendly. You also need to put seed-bearing flowers in your garden.
- You can add bird baths to your yard because birds love flowing water. Not all the birds come to your yard for feeding. They also come for bathing as well as preening.
- Make sure to keep your yard safe from any of your pets or other bird predators. Apart from that, you also need to provide adequate housing in your garden for the birds.
- You can also use decoy birds to lure the real ones. The decoy must be close to reality as well and it must have the right size and color.
Types of bird feeders
There are different types of feeders that you can use in your yards. Make sure you use more than one type of feeder in your yard and also provide them with a varsity of foods. (2)
- Platform or tray seeders have the tendency to attract a number of birds. These include the starlings, house sparrows, and pigeons. They can also bring in native sparrows and grosbeaks (3).
- This feeder will keep the seeds well protected against bird droppings as well as wet weather. As the seeds don’t get wet, there are fewer chances of bacterial and fungal development.
- Window feeders feature small plastic bottles that you can fix to your window glass and they have suction cups. With these feeders, you can have a look at the birds feeding up close.
- These types of feeders have hollow tubes and hence the seeds will remain dry and clean if the feeder comes with metal pods for feeding.
- These are also called thistle feeders and they come in two different forms. You can find them with small-sized feeding ports or with thistle socks.
- The socks are fine bags made of mesh. The birds can cling onto these socks and extract the seeds.
- These feeders are made of mesh and wires. These wires can either be covered with plastic, or it is made of onion bag mesh. You can easily tie or nail them and suspend them. It allows you to fix them to the side of the hopper feeder.
Which bird feeder attracts the most birds?
There are different types of bird feeders that can attract different types of birds. For instance, the tray feeders are good for starlings, pigeons, and sparrows. They also work well for the grosbeaks, jays, doves, juncos, blackbirds. So this is a good choice if you are looking to attract those birds who prefer to feed closer to the ground. But make sure that you don’t have any of your pets lurking around in the area, or they will scare the birds away.
Hoppers can give protection to the birds who like to stand out from the crowd. You can also use them to protect your bird seeds from squirrels’ invasion. These are suitable for cardinals, bunting, jays, grosbeaks, finches, and chickadees. You can build your own hopper style feeder if you enjoy DIY.
Nyjer feeders are can lure Redpolls, Pine Siskins, and American Goldfinches. Squirrels don’t like the nyjer seed, so a flimsy plastic feeder can work here.
Where to place the bird feeder?
You can use different strategies to place the bird feeders. Just make sure the birds have easy access to them and away from predators. But keep in mind that you need to place it somewhere when you can easily access the feeder for cleaning etc.
- If the birds don’t have easy access to the feeders, they will never come to your place again. Also, make sure that the feeders are placed where none of your pets or other animals can scare them away.
- Some of the birds like quail, thrashers, pigeons, and doves are ground feeders and for them, you need to go for the feeders that are close to the ground.
- Jays, cardinals, sparrows, and finches feed on a high off the ground feeders. These birds like black-oil sunflower seeds (4). So if you want to attract any specific species, you need to place their favorite seeds in the feeder.
- If you are looking to hang your bird feeder, make sure to hang it on a tree (7). You can use a bungee cord, rope, or chain to secure it tightly to the branch. There needs to be an S-hook for easy access to take it off for cleaning or refilling etc.
- For making the bird feeder squirrel proof, make sure that you add the squirrel guard on the cord and then add your bird feeder. If you are not using a squirrel guard, then place them where squirrels can’t reach.
- Make sure that the height of the bird feeder is right. Some bird feeders also come with an adjustable hanger that allows you to change the height of the feeder when you need it.
- You also need to spread the feeders across the place so that the shy birds don’t get too much intimidated by the aggressive ones.
How to choose the right bird feeder?
Firstly you need to choose the type of bird you want to attract. Now you have to choose the right kind of bird feeder according to the bird species that you want to attract. Here are some more important points to look for:
- Need to be easy to clean – Sometimes, choosing a bird feeder, we can easily forget about how easy to clean they are. You have to double-check that the bird feeder that you are considered must be very easy to clean. This is important to keep the feeder functions for attracting more birds.
- Weatherproof – As your bird feeder will be out there in the garden facing all the elements 24/7, therefore, it needs to be fully weatherproof. The best bird feeder is the one that is strong enough to withstand scorching summer heat and freezing winter conditions.
- Squirrel-proof – An ideal bird feeder should stand tough against squirrels and other animal attacks. If you live in an area where there are a lot of squirrels, or you have pets in your house, then make sure the bird feeder is designed in a manner to keep itself clear from such attacks. You need to go for the weight-activated squirrel guard because it will keep the squirrels away.
- Durable – Your bird feeder needs to be very durable because it is exposed at all times to a variety of natural elements.
- Proper venting – The feeders should also keep the seed dry so that it doesn’t get any bacterial or fungal development. For this, proper venting is important as it will prevent any mold or mildew development.
Best Bird Feeders
1. Woodlink Absolute II Squirrel Resistant Bird Feeder
This Woodlink Squirrel Resistant Feeder has a clever double-sided design and is perfect for songbirds and clinging birds. (6)
The company uses a special TopLoc feature during its construction which helps you to hold and open the lid for filling feed and cleaning purposes with ease.
Additionally, top quality steel material makes it more durable as compared to wood and plastic feeders.
The best thing is that it offers two mount options, so you are able to choose as your requirements. It comes with a zinc-plated steel hanger for hanging mounting.
You can mount it on the pole with a 5 ft pole. Your package also includes a ground socket that is sturdier with no rust plastic.
Check the price of Woodlink Squirrel Resistant Bird Feeder here
What we liked
- Easy to fill & best for small birds
- Double-sided feeder
- The TopLoc feature adds convenience
- Comes with pole and hang mounting option
- Constructed with reliable chew-proof steel
- Premium quality powder coating attracts birds
What we didn’t like
- May not fully squirrel-proof due to poor plastic window
How much seed/food can fit: 2 Gallons, about 12 lb
What special about it: The clever double-sided design
Measurements: 13.5-inch x 16-inch x 11.2-inch
2. Nature Anywhere Window Bird Feeder
Do you love garden birds and want to purchase a bird feeder?
Nature Anywhere window bird feeder features an air-circulations vent system, which keeps the feed safe and dry from the hazardous mold.
You can configure it on to plain glass window for discovering garden birds.
It has tremendously well made, attractive, and sturdy.
Furthermore, it comes with a sliding seed tray, which makes the filling and cleanliness easier. This tray can hold more than two cups of bird feed or seed.
It has 4 heavy-duty suction cups that keep the squirrels away from the bird feeder.
What we liked
- Comes with two compartments for multiple feeds
- Sliding tray make the cleanliness and refilling easy
- Premium quality construction make it squirrel proof
- Offer an excellent VIP free customer services
- Does not require any assembly
- The best hopper style bird feeder
What we didn’t like
- Comes with pointless holes that let the feeds fall through
- Can be small for a large garden
How much seed/food can fit: More than 2 cups
What special about it: The air circulation vents system
Measurements: 7.9-inch x 4.3-inch x 7.5-inch
3. Bolite Hummingbird Feeder
Bolite is manufacturing the best hummingbird feeder that comes with effective design.
It features a red heart-shaped five feeding perches and ports.
You can hang this feeder in multiple places like you can hang it on the wall and deck hooks, feeding poles, and tree branches.
It can hold more than 22-ounce of nectar that provides adequate energy for the hummingbirds.
There is no need to refill the glass frequently.
The combination of a red vintage glass bottle, copper base, and metal cap perfectly fit any garden and backyard. It is effortless to refill and clean it.
What we liked
- Easy to clean and refill
- Useful and convenient design
- Offers large capacity to hold hummingbird feed
- Perches permit the birds to rest while drinking
- Comes with multiple hanging options
- The purchase comes with 12-hour professional customer services
What we didn’t like
- Can be somewhat difficult to assemble
- Nectar can attract ants, bees, and other pests
How much seed/food can fit: About 22 ounces
What special about it: Offers multiple hanging options like a tree branch, feeding poles, etc.
Measurements: 8.5-inch x 8.1-inch x 9.8-inch
4. Brome Squirrel Buster Bird Feeder
If you’re looking to buy the best squirrel proof feeder, we suggest to consider the Brome Squirrel Buster.
An adult squirrel weight automatically shuts down its seed ports and squirrels cannot access the seed.
The company uses RoxResinTM chew-proof metal material to construct all the parts of the chew-proof feeder.
For that reason, all components are waterproof, chew-proof, and rustproof.
Apart from this, all parts of the feeder are UV-resistant that keeps the bird feeder innovative.
It features a negative grip tube that stops squirrels from grabbing the wire. You can also place it in multiple places, such as tree branches.
What we liked
- The perfect squirrel and chew proof
- Equipped with seed ventilation system regulates air to permit humidity
- No tool is required for its assembling
- A spring mechanism permits you to adjust the weight according to the bird’s size
- Online customer services are also accessible
What we didn’t like
- Does not come with weather guards
How much seed/food can fit: About 1.3 pounds
What special about it: All components are UV-resistant that keeps the feeder unique
Measurements: 05-inch x 05-inch x 13.2-inch
5. Woodlink Going Green Large Bird Feeder
The Woodlink Going Green feeder is the best large option to attract plenty of birds.
It comes with a two-sided seed tray, which offers wide perching areas.
The powder-coated base of Woodlink allows for appropriate drainage plus seed aeration of birdseed.
It has an overhanging roof that protects the seed from the weather.
Additionally, windows make Woodlink bird feeder easy to refill and clean.
This is a fully assembled feeder and no tools required for assembly. You can mount it on a pole or tree branch.
Check the price of Woodlink Going Green Large Bird Feeder here
What we liked
- Comes with the two-sided seed tray
- Powder-coated base permits for proper drainage
- An overhanging roof protects the bird’s food
- Easy to assemble, clean, and refill
What we didn’t like
- Heavyweight bird feeder
How much seed/food can fit: More than 5.5-pound of seed and 2-suet cakes
What special about it: Comes with suet cages that make it more durable
Measurements: 13.5-inch x 11.8-inch x 10.5-inch
Related: 12 Best Suet Cakes for Birds (No-Melt & No-Squirrels)