While the type of feeder you select is important, where you put your feeders is also part of successful backyard bird feeding.
Proper bird feeder placement makes a startling difference for the attractiveness of a bird feeder, both for the birds eating from it and the birders watching it. By placing your feeders where they will be most convenient for you and the birds, you can make the most of every opportunity to provide good food for a wide range of birds and to see many species enjoying the meal.
Learning how to attract birds to your new bird feeder involves just a few simple steps. Once you create an inviting environment for attracting birds, they will be more likely to fly by and dine!
The best place to put a feeder will simulate a bird’s natural feeding preferences. Suet feeders for woodpeckers, for example, will be more popular if placed near tree trunks or thick branches.
Window collisions are often fatal to small birds. Feeders should be placed either very close to the window (less than three feet), or much further away (greater than 10 feet).
Birds will not visit a feeder in an unsafe area. Position bird feeders roughly 10-12 feet from suitable shelter such as trees, brush piles, or shrubs to give birds a safe, fast retreat whenever a predator is nearby.
Birds need to see a feeder before they will readily visit it. Placing feeders in a sunny, open area makes them more visible to passing birds.
PROVIDING BIRD BATHS
Provide nearby perches, bird baths, and suitable shelter for both safety and nesting to meet all of the birds’ basic needs so they will stay in the area for more than just feeding.
If you use chemicals in one area of your yard, such as pesticides on a garden, bird feeders should be placed far away so seed or other foods cannot become contaminated.
Placing feeders well away from trees, sturdy shrubs, fences, roofs, and other structures where squirrels can leap from will help keep the feeder free from damage.
Spreading feeders out over a greater distance can allow more birds the chance to feed and help lessen the risk of spreading diseases at bird feeders.
Feeders in quiet, less disturbed areas generally do better than feeders placed near active areas such as a play structure, garage door, or patio.
HOOK AND HANG
If you are using a pole or shepard’s hook to hang your feeders, be sure that it’s large enough to hold the weight of the feeders you plan to hang without bending.
The two main things to keep in mind when deciding where to place your bird feeder are: can you see the feeder well, and is the feeder in a safe location. The first of these is easy, but the second takes a bit more planning. You’ll want to make sure the feeder is in a place that’s relatively safe from window collisions and from predators.