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We have house finches...now what??
#84585 February 27th, 2007 at 09:24 PM
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Hello all! I'm a stay at home mom who recently started to backyard bird watch. I've got different feeders with mixed seed, suet, and black oil sunflower seed. I'm getting the usual crowd - house finches, sparrows, grackels, starlings, goldfinches, and doves. I really would love to attract cardinals, woodpeckers, titmice, and nuthatches. I live in a new suburb surrounded by fields and treed lots. Will word spread among the birds? The feeders have been out a few weeks....Thanks!

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84586 February 27th, 2007 at 10:23 PM
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The word should spread. Several different species of birds feed at the same places at the same time and can recognize the different species feeding sounds and actions. This will attract more and more feeder species to your feeders. For the Woodpeckers and Nuthatches you want to go with the suet, especially peanut flavored suet. Titmouses and Cardinals prefer Black Oil Sunflower seed which you already have......BUT! Sometimes it's not JUST the food but the type of feeder you present it on. Cardinals like platform feeders. That is, just spread down a layer of BOSS( Black Oil SUNFLOWER seed) on a flat surface like a platform or the ground; I use an old table top. Platform feeders are preferred by Blue Jays (Use peanuts IN the shell), Juncos, Cardinals, Sparrows, Mockingbirds (use fruit like apples, oranges, grapes, raisins, and grape jelly. Mockingbirds also prefer peanut flavored suet in a cage). Most other birds like hanging and tube feeders AS WELL AS platform feeders. As a rule of thumb, most all feeder birds will use a platform feeder but not all will use a tube or hanging feeder. American Goldfinches like tube or nylon-mesh sock feeders filled with niger thistle seed. They also like BOSS OR plant some BOSS and when the plants mature and the flower heads go to seed let them stand and the Goldfinches will come by the dozens to eat the seed right off the flower heads.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84587 February 27th, 2007 at 10:24 PM
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Don't forget the birdbath and watering dishes!

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84588 February 27th, 2007 at 10:58 PM
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Speaking of water features, you know what I've learned?
If you put out water, you'll attract lots of wildlife.
BUT, repeat, BUT, as I am absolutely paranoid about someone's toddler getting out, I NEVER EVER EVER EVER use anything deeper than a pie pan for water.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84589 February 27th, 2007 at 11:11 PM
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AND it is best to use a drip, mist, or splash feature to your birdbath or SHALLOW pond to attract ALL bird species to your yard. Insect eating birds will NOT come to your seed feeders but WILL come to a dripping, splashing, misting, gurgling, water feature. ALL birds need drinking and bathing water, but not ALL need seeds.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84590 February 28th, 2007 at 03:48 AM
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Thank you! I plan on putting out a birdbath in the next little bit. I'm also going to buy a platform feeder this weekend. We DID get a cardinal today (yeah!) but he didn't stay, probably because he didn't like the feeders I have.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84591 February 28th, 2007 at 07:14 AM
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You can make a platfrom feeder easily. Just put a pile of food on an old table top that you don't need any more and they'll come to it. I got a junk stainless steel table from a store that had closed down, for FREE and now use that as my platform feeder. It has two long narrow shelves perfect for different kinds of food, AND watering dishes.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84592 February 28th, 2007 at 07:32 AM
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Both the house finches and purple finches seem to enjoy the standard tube feeders I use. smile Two of my new tube-like feeders are made with wire mesh and all the birds seems to flock to them. Duh I think that may be the result of all the birds knocking out enough sunflower seeds to keep the squirrels happy eating the seeds on the ground. wink

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84593 February 28th, 2007 at 07:52 AM
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House Finches and Purple Finches DO like to use the tube feeders. They are one of the species who are NOT particular to the type of feeder and are happy to use whatever is available. My two squirrels are VERY polite and only feed from the ground or the platform feeder......USUALLY laugh . They are very welcome And I try to keep out peanuts in the shell for them and the Jays. One of my squirrels I named Nick due to her having acrooked tail with a big swath of hair missing from it. The other day I saw a rabbit sitting on top of my platform feeder with its CUTE powder-puff tail. It was NICK! Something finished the job on her tail so I guess I'll have to change her name to Stumpy Stubbs now.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84594 February 28th, 2007 at 09:21 AM
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Quote
My two squirrels are VERY polite and only feed from the ground or the platform feeder......USUALLY
Well, mine aren't always that polite and I don't even mind them eating from the bird feeders. smile I do tend to get frustrated when they destroy my feeders and other things, eek so I've just become a little better at choosing feeders. Duh Of course, their antics always make me smile, smile so I guess it's kind of a trade off. They are sooo cute, you can't help but love them! luv

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84595 February 28th, 2007 at 02:01 PM
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I know what you mean, Patches! grinnnn

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Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84596 February 28th, 2007 at 02:32 PM
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clp Awwww....he comes right up to you???

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84597 February 28th, 2007 at 03:19 PM
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That is at a city park here and, YES! they will sit right on your lap!

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84598 February 28th, 2007 at 03:28 PM
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shk ...they dont do that here laugh laugh

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84599 February 28th, 2007 at 04:05 PM
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The black crows, the brown thrashers, black birds, and of course the squirrels love the shelled peanuts, but they actually prefer the unsalted ones. Sometimes I will see wrens playing in the peanut bowl dish, I am not sure what they are doing in there!

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84600 February 28th, 2007 at 04:18 PM
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Wrens like peanuts, too.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84601 February 28th, 2007 at 04:25 PM
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Penny, the park is Centennial Park near Downtown Nashville, Tennessee and is on the edge of the Vanderbilt University Campus. Hundreds of people visit the park EVERY day and most bring bread and peanuts for the birds and squirrels. The Park AND the University have existed for well over 100 years so there has been over 100 generations of squirrels and birds there they have lived in CLOSE friendship with people. They squirrels do NOT like to be petted, but as long as you do not try to touch and grab them they will climb all over you and dig in your pockets looking for nuts and other treats. There is a McDonald's on the west edge of the park and you see squirrels digging in the trash cans to get at the dill pickles (of all things) in the scraps of food.

Re: We have house finches...now what??
#84602 February 28th, 2007 at 05:36 PM
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laugh laugh laugh I have never heard of a squirrel looking for pickles....to funny!!!


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