Setting up a bird feeding station can add a lot of enjoyment to your wild bird watching in winter and summer.
Rather than just placing a single feeder in your backyard, consider adding a variety of feeders at different levels with different food to attract a bonanza of birds.
If you do, I promise, you'll be rewarded with more birds and a greater variety of species of birds.
Rather than just placing a single feeder with a single seed type, you'll find your backyard will attract more birds if you mix things up a bit.
The first consideration when setting up your bird feeding station is location. You'll want it where you'll have a clear view and convenient enough that it doesn't become a chore to refill your feeders.
Take note of the surrounding area. There should be trees and shrubs within 100 feet.
This will provide the birds a place to flee should predators come too close. Keep feeders in the open and not too close to shrubs where cats can hide.
There are four basic areas where birds eat, although there may be some overlapping of bird species from one to the other.
Ground Level - Some birds that feed at this level are - mourning doves, juncos, towhees, quail, pheasants, and sparrows.
You can build a simple wooden platform raised slightly above ground or purchase a Ground Feeder.
Seeds thrown on the ground can get wet and cause health problems for the birds.
Be sure to provide drainage holes to keep the seed dry. See Bird Seed for a chart showing what types of seeds and what birds they attract.
Table-Top - Whether a picnic table, deck railing, or windowsill, this level of bird feeding will attract Cardinals, Chickadees, Titmice, Wrens, Bluejays, and Grosbeaks.
Put up a windowsill feeder or choose one made to attach to the deck railing to feed birds at this level. You can also place them on posts varying the height of each post.
Hanging Feeders - Adding a few cylindrical-style hanging feeders to your station will attract chickadees, finches, nuthatches, and titmice.
Stretch a rope or small chain between two trees and hang several styles of feeders filled with sunflower and Nyjer seeds. These will bring the birds in close.
Tree Trunk - This area is ideal for attracting some of the woodpeckers such as the Hairy and Downy. Place suet feeders against the side of a tree. Brown creepers, chickadees, titmice, and jays will visit tree trunk sites.
Always include a source of water, both in summer and winter. Many birds that would never visit your feeders will come to your birdbath. Consider a birdbath heater to keep water open in winter weather. All birds need water during the winter.
Many birds are attracted to more than one type of feeder and more than one level. If you want to attract the greatest variety of birds to your backyard, a bird feeding station is the way to get the job done.
Squirrel Proof Sunflower Feeders
Bird Quest Spiral Finch
Giant Finch Flocker
Nyjer Feeder w/Tray
Upside Down Nyjer Feeder