Best Tips For Outwitting Bird Feeder Hogs Like Starlings And Grackles

Seeing a soiree of starlings, a bevy of blackbirds, or a gaggle of grackles descending upon my backyard feeding station sends me into a state of panic! It just makes me cringe to think of all that expensive black oil sunflower seed ending up in their stomachs instead of my beautiful songbirds’ bellies.

But the situation isn’t hopeless, far from it. Here are 7 remedies to keep these feeder hogs from wiping out your precious seeds. You may need to use one or more to ensure success.

1. Take down your feeders for a week or two. Hopefully these hungry birds will see that the easy meal has evaporated and move on to another place. This option should only be considered if it’s summertime. Otherwise try one of the other remedies below.

2. Having large beaks can be at once a blessing and a curse. Opt for a caged feeder that is meant to accommodate smaller-beaked birds only. Or there are small plastic satellite-type feeders which grackles and starlings as well as pigeons, mourning doves and crows cannot access.

3. Do not use a ground feeder or scatter seeds on the ground for the birds. Flocks of invasive foragers find this irresistible. Also, be sure to rake up all the stuff that falls from the bird feeders on a regular basis so it can’t accumulate.

4. Use grey striped sunflower seeds. Grackles especially have softer beaks and find it impossible to remove the outer hard shells of these seeds. Also, do not use cracked corn or millet, which are favorites of all the feeder hogs.

5. If your suet feeders are the entree du jour, try using those clever upside-down suet feeders. None of the feeder hogs can figure out how to cling to them and chow down, while upside down.

6. Using tube-style feeders will limit the number of birds that are able to use them at the same time. That might prove frustrating enough to send your big eaters like house sparrows and mourning doves on their way.

7. Feeders that close when larger, heavier birds or squirrels land on them can foil a lot of big birds at once. Squirrels however will eventually figure out how to get around the perch and be able to dine at their leisure. As with all pests, they are clever, tenacious and persistent. That is the key to a squirrel’s success!

Try any or all of these remedies to see what works on your particular bird feeder ’emptier’. Even if you have to employ more than one, it will be worth it to keep the majority of your precious seeds for the beautiful songbirds.

On the other hand, grackles, blackbirds and starlings eat a ton of flies. They gorge themselves on everything from the blue-bottle fly to the common house fly. They are very fond of gypsy moths and their caterpillars as well.

Even though they are a major bird feeder problem, I have to say I love the starlings’ iridescent purple and blue feathers, with all those little white spots that look like stars in a night sky. Starlings are closely related to myna birds, and are very gifted mimics. They can imitate humans as well as other birds.

All of these bird feeder hogs are preyed upon by hawks, owls and falcons. So if you have a neighborhood hawk patrolling, chances are these pest birds won’t be emptying your feeders for very long!

Guide On How To Have A Great Experience With Your Deer Feeder

Deer feeders help you to attract deer to a given area so that you can easily view or hunt them. If hunting, the feeders give you an opportunity to observe the animals and choose the ones that meet the wildlife management criteria.

Tips on how to have a great experience with your deer feeder

For you to have a great experience with your feeder you need to consider a number of tips that include:

Install the feeder at the right place: Where you locate the feeder has a great impact on your success rate. The location of the feeder should provide you with good visibility, the easy approach into the wind, good deer traffic, easy access to water and good escape routes. It’s common for mice, bears, squirrels and birds to attempt to use the feeders. To avoid attracting other animals other than the deer, you should use varmint guards and feed pens. You can also consider hanging the feeder on a stand that is low enough for only the deer to reach.

Invest in high-quality feeders: High-quality feeders not only last for a long time they also reduce wastage. With a high-quality unit, you provide the feed to the deer when they want to eat. Deer feed at certain times during the day. A high-quality unit will be able to tell the right time to release the feed without your direct involvement.

Be wise in your food choices: There is no way that you will attract deer if you don’t use the right food. To be successful you should use food that the animals love to eat. The animals love eating a blend of grains such as deer pellets and corn. If you are interested in the health of the animals, you should provide a variety of grains. You should regularly replace or refill the feeder depending on the weather conditions and number of deer feeding.

Feed the animals at the right time: Different deer feed at different times. Some will feed at specific times of the day while others will feed at all times as long as you are providing them with food. You should research and find the best time to feed your animals. Experts recommend that you start feeding the deer during the cooler months of the year. During this time the food is scarce. If the animals keep on coming you should provide them with food the entire year but if they feed at a certain time, you should provide feed them only at this time.


Deer feeders are a must have for any hunter or animal lover. To have an easy time you should use high-quality feeders. You should also install the units at the right location. Also remember to use the right food and feed the animals at the right time.

Four Tips to Attract Cardinals to Your Bird Feeder

Cardinals are some of the most beautiful birds in nature. Nothing can beat their bright red plumage against the white snow on a winter day. But attracting them to your bird feeder can be tricky. Here are four tips to make them frequent visitors.

1. Location! Location! Location!

Perhaps the most important part of attracting cardinals to your bird feeder is to put your bird feeder in a proper location. It needs to be near some cover, so the birds can fly there quickly to feel safe. Cover can be a tree, a bush, a wood pile, even a large potted plant. Birds aren’t comfortable visiting feeders that are out in the open.

2. Black oil sunflower seed

Next, you need to provide the right food for Cardinals. Black oil sunflower seed is one of the best, and it will attract a wide variety of birds as well.

3. Keep predators away

If animals other than birds are visiting your feeders, then the birds may be scared away. Take measures to keep predators out of your bird feeder. Earlier it was stated to hang the feeder near to a tree. Just don’t hang the feeder in a tree. Other animals can climb up the tree and get to the food. Instead, put the feeder on a free standing pole, and put a baffle-type predator guard about three feet from the bottom. This will prevent animals from climbing the pole to get to the bird seed.

4. Keep the feeder filled

Birds eat early in the morning, sometimes before the crack of dawn. Therefore, it is important that your feeders are filled before you go to bed at night. Also, check them several times throughout the day to ensure that they are filled. It may sound obvious, but Cardinals will not visit your feeder if it is not consistently filled with food.