Not all birds fly south for the winter. Help out those you see by putting up a feeder. Then keep a list of all the kinds of birds that come to eat - during the winter and all year long!

How to attract birds

If you start feeding in winter, don't stop. It will stress out the birds. Some could even die.

Keep feeders filled.

Separate various foods. If possible, put each kind in a separate feeder so large birds don't crowd out smaller birds.

Provide warm water for birds to drink.

Clean feeders once a month with soap and water to prevent sick birds from infecting others.

Pick up seeds from the ground; they can collect bacteria and infect birds.

Place feeders near trees so birds can find cover quickly if a cat or hawk appears.

In late winter, hang new birdhouses and clean out old ones.

Types of feeders

There are many different kinds of feeders. Here are a few of the most popular:

Covered Platform

Most birds like these.The roof keeps food dry, and the low rim keeps in food.

Tube seed feeder

Popular with small birds, such as finches, and chickadees.

Window feeder

A one-way mirror on the back of this feeder lets you observe birds close up. Suction cups secure it to the window.

Suet feeder

Most birds like these, too. Use suet cakes or make your own. To make suet, mix table scraps, seeds and nuts with melted fat. Pour the mixture into a container to set. Remove from container and put solid suet in a holder or mesh bag.

What birds like to eat

Different birds like different things. Here's a guide to get you started.


Black-capped chickadee

White-breasted nuthatch

Tufted titmouse

Downy woodpecker

Black-oil sunflower seeds

Black-capped chickadee

White-breasted nuthatch

Tufted titmouse

Downy woodpecker

Northern cardinal

Blue jay

Thistle seeds

American goldfinch

House finch

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