Birds are the beauty of nature, and for most people, birds have the most pleasant sound and are the most beautiful sight in the garden. If you want to attract many colorful and bigger birds to your garden, you have to select the right feeder for them. If you’re going to attract Cardinal birds, you have to choose the best bird feeders according to their requirements.
Cardinals are one of the cutest and unique birds. Cardinal name comes from the Latin word Cardinalis Cardinalis. They have vibrant and deep colors, and they are a little different from other birds because of their unusual way of moving and flying.
Choosing the right food and the right feeder will attract the most beautiful birds to your garden. Here are the bird feeder plans that you should keep in mind while using Cardinal bird feeders.
Always Put the Feeder in the Right Place
Cardinals have a different nature from other birds, they have a territorial character, and they like to feed in an area where they protect themselves from predators. Cardinals are basically ground feeders, and in the morning, the first birds to appear in your garden are Cardinals, and they are the last to eat at night, and you won’t find them much during the day.
The main reason you attract any bird to your garden is so you can see it. But if you place the Cardinal bird feeder in an open area, there is less chance of Cardinals getting close to it. So always place the feeder near some bushes and hedges, and this way, the Cardinal will feel safe while approaching the feeders. The bushes will provide them with shelter, and they will not feel threatened.
There are few birds that have a very bold nature and will fly straight to the feeders, but Cardinals are not like them. They will take time to adapt and will carefully approach food in the safety of the surrounding bushes.
Although Cardinals feel safe around bushes and hiding places, if squirrels and cats are not problems in your garden, then you can put some seeds in the ground for Cardinals to enjoy. If you don’t have space to hang bird feeders, you can also hang them on a bird feeder stand.
Put the Right Food in the Feeder
The next important step is to put the proper feed in the feeder. Knowing what Cardinals like to eat and when to fill the feeder with the right mix of food will attract lots of birds to your garden.
The most common food that can be put in the feeder are:
● Dogwood seeds
● Wild grapes
Cardinals also like to feed on insects, butterflies, grasshoppers, and beetles.
How to Attract Cardinals to Bird Feeders?
Use Proper Feeders
Along with the type of food you offer, it is also important to select the proper feeders, the variety of feeders that will suit these Cardinal birds. The feeder you choose should be strong enough to hold the birds. The weight of a Cardinal bird is about 1.5 ounces which is heavy for the feeder. Similarly, feeders that are lightweight are also avoided because they can swing under the weight of Cardinal birds. Those feeders with a platform or built-in trays will provide enough space for the Cardinals, and these feeders should be preferred. Cardinals are the birds that are much wider, so they need more space when visiting a feeder.
Provide Water Sources Along with Feeder
Like all other birds, Cardinals also need a long, uninterrupted water supply for both drinking and bathing. You can provide waterers and bird baths to meet their needs. So, along with the feeder, a larger bird bath is required that can accommodate these large birds. Those bird baths are the best that are 2-3 inches deep. To attract Cardinals to your bird fountain, you should consider adding a dripper to keep the water moving. However, no matter which method you choose, always change the water and clean the containers to prevent algae growth and dirt build-up.
Prevent Frozen Water
Cardinals do not migrate to another area ad they live in the same place throughout the year, even in the winter months. To make sure the water is not freezing, you need to change the water regularly and provide them with a heated bird bath. This way, you will see that your backyard will be a hotspot for Cardinals.
Provide More Protective Shelters Around the Feeders
As mentioned earlier, Cardinals love to stay in areas surrounded by lots of trees, bushes, and thick foliage. So plant different trees, shrubs, and bushes along the feeder, so these songbirds feel protective. When planting trees, always plant the ones that remain evergreen throughout the year and also provide cover for them in the winter months.
Encourage Nesting Sites
Cardinals are different from other birds; they will not use nests or bird houses. The dense plant life you have planted around the feeder as a shelter will use it as a nesting site. Tall trees, grapevines, and different shrubs are the ideal places for nests. Similarly, if you provide ready-made nesting material, you will also encourage long-term nesting.
It is important that your garden has small twigs, pine needles, grass clippings, and other materials to help to build the nests.
Things to Avoid While Using Cardinal Bird Feeders
When you are thinking of putting some attractive things in your garden to attract Cardinals, there are few things you should avoid for the safety and health of these birds. Here are some things to avoid for a regular and subsequent visit from Cardinal friends.
Cardinals have a protective behavior of the territory and will attack their reflection to protect themselves. Although this behavior is not fatal, it can cause injuries such as beak damage and unnecessary stress on birds. To avoid this behavior, remove those backyard surfaces that have reflections such as mirrors and windows. For windows, you can use bird nets to deter them. Similarly, if there is a parking lot nearby, cover your car mirrors with plastic bags.
If you have any visiting birds like Cardinals, never use poisons or any other chemicals around bird feeders. Herbicides, insecticides, and fertilizers contaminate food and water sources, which can be very lethal for these birds.
Predator-accessible Feeding Areas
If you have any pets that can go outside, you should avoid letting them out or keep them away from the Cardinals’ feeding area. Similarly, you should also avoid spreading seeds or placing feeders near low areas of shrubs and bushes because these areas are easily accessible to predators. You can also use the squirrel-proof Cardinal bird feeders to prevent the attack of squirrels and keep the food safe.
If you want to see Cardinals in your backyard, do not place the bird feeder in the area where your family and friends spend a lot of time. Always place the feeders closer to the ground and at different levels. To attract more birds, provide various types of food. If Cardinals are present but do not go to the feeders, try spreading the food on the ground. Don’t forget to provide water baths along with Cardinal feeders.
You can set goals to bird-watch after you have placed your Cardinal bird feeder in your backyard and record your results.