Dealing with Blackbirds

Dealing with Blackbirds

Sometimes you just have too many blackbirds (European Starlings and Common Grackles). They can eat more than their share of food and chase other birds away. However, you can be a seasonally savvy hobbyist by anticipating the arrival of your problem birds and implementing the following solutions to keep these birds from monopolizing your feeders.

The Right Food

We offer a variety of foods to help you deal with nuisance birds at your feeders.

  • Feed Safflower seed. European Starlings and Common Grackles cannot crack the hard shell of this seed, but your seed-eating Cardinals, Chickadees, Titmice and House Finches have no problem dealing with the harder shell.
  • Offer only pure rendered suet cakes as European Starlings often ignore them. Starlings are attracted to the other ingredients (like peanuts) in suet-blend cakes more than just plain suet.
  • Don't offer foods containing cracked corn and millet that are favorites of House Sparrows, European Starlings, Rock Pigeons, Common Grackles and other blackbirds.

Feeder Solutions

  • Deter larger birds from visiting your existing feeder by adding an On-Guard™ wire mesh cage. Our On-Guard solutions are designed to allow smaller birds access but prevent doves, pigeons, even blackbirds from reaching the food in a feeder. We offer a variety of cages that easily fit on our seed tube, finch, peanut, suet and some of our specialty feeders.

Solution Feeders

We offer a variety of feeders that help you feed only the birds you want.

  • Upside-down Suet Feeders - These feeders are designed to allow birds to feed from below, a comfortable practice for woodpeckers, nuthatches, chickadees and other clinging birds but difficult for starlings.
  • Dinner Bell™ feeder - Use this versatile feeder to offer a number of different foods. The Dinner Bell's adjustable dome can be raised and lowered to allow access for smaller birds.
  • The Eliminator™ and Fundamentals Squirrel-proof feeders. Both of these feeders are weight-sensitive and will close off access to the food when heavier visitors, such as pigeons and most doves, sit on a perch.