Join for FREE
It only takes a minute!

Welcome to BirdForum.
BirdForum is the net's largest birding community, dedicated to wild birds and birding, and is absolutely FREE! You are most welcome to register for an account, which allows you to take part in lively discussions in the forum, post your pictures in the gallery and more.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rating: Thread Rating: 9 votes, 5.00 average.
Old Tuesday 28th October 2003, 22:31   #1
birdman
Орнитолог-любитель
 
birdman's Avatar

 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Doncaster, UK
Posts: 5,428
Question Why won't the birds come to my feeders?

It might sound like I'm complaining, but due to the circumstances, I'm not really... I'm just curious as to whether why I think they don't come is likely to be the reason.

I live on a new housing development, and therefore have a new garden... but it is now 18 months old - ie 2 summers.

My garden list (that is birds that have physically landed in my garden stands at about 10.

Within the last couple of weeks, we have added Robin - so, yep, best part of 18 months with no Robin.

Now the Starlings love it... can't keep them out, when they're in the neighbourhood - we get occasional Blue Tits, and a pair of Blackbirds seemed to include the garden as part of their feeding territory last Autumn (though no sign of them yet) - but eveything else has been virtually "ones".

We have hanging feeders, a high table and a ground table - and small berrybushes and plenty of plants complete with insects. And a daily changed water supply.

But nothing seems overly interested - except a hedgehog!

When I answer other threads on the subject, I explain it away by saying that we back on to open ground, with quite a mixed habitat - also we are right on the edge of town - and so the birds have little need to visit the garden.

But is that really it?

Or are we doing something wrong?

Any suggestions?
birdman is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 28th October 2003, 23:00   #2
Elizabeth Bigg
Addicted member

 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4,088
Robins love mealworms, and a few years ago we had a hand tame one with this "bait". I have a feeder attached to a window (not yet reached by the pesky squirrels), and robins, bluetits and sparrows visit this. There are also feeders that exclude larger birds (for a while we just used an upturned hanging basket frame). A blackbird will collect as many as 12 mealworms at a time when there are young to be fed, so we had to draw the line here.

Our website shows the window feeder (in the 2003 section), and also a mealworm feeder exclusively for blue and great tits when they were feeding chicks. There is a rather large number of photographs this year, as I am a trainee webmistress, and have learnt how to prepare a selection of pictures from the vast number we get from the image catching software on the computer.

I'm very envious of your hedgehog - our regular visitor vanished a long time ago, and all we "see" now via the infrared camera is a fox, and sometimes a cat.
Elizabeth Bigg is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 29th October 2003, 18:03   #3
Geoff Brown
Registered User
 
Geoff Brown's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Near Boston, Lincolnshire
Posts: 1,207
At least you haven't yet got rats. Two of them regularly swarm up the poles for my feeders and the birds don't seem to mind them. Two I can handle but if any more decide to come then it will be out with the air gun. I may even contact the Mayor of Hamelin to see if the Pied Piper wants a new fee paying job!
__________________
Geoff Brown
Geoff Brown is offline  
Reply With Quote
BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Click here to Support BirdForum
Old Wednesday 29th October 2003, 18:43   #4
Elizabeth Bigg
Addicted member

 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Posts: 4,088
Quote:
Originally Posted by Geoff Brown
At least you haven't yet got rats. Two of them regularly swarm up the poles for my feeders and the birds don't seem to mind them. Two I can handle but if any more decide to come then it will be out with the air gun. I may even contact the Mayor of Hamelin to see if the Pied Piper wants a new fee paying job!
We have had a rat visitor twice, in the day time - but the (free) local authority "rodent operative" dealt with them. I very much doubt if they can get onto my bird table - the squirrels can't get round the baffle. I also have a large ugly three tube feeder, again with a squirrel baffle.
Elizabeth Bigg is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Wednesday 29th October 2003, 19:14   #5
Larry Lade
Super Moderator
 
Larry Lade's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Saint Joseph, Missouri, USA
Posts: 13,376
Blog Entries: 1
Geoff, you got any kids/grandkids that might be affected by "the Piper"!!!

Attendance at our feeders seems rather arbitrary at times. Some periods of time (from several days to several weeks) there will be a lot of activity. Then there may be a period of time when the birds are just not coming. Of course, if there is a raptor or a cat in the immediate area the birds are gone! Our problem is that our feeders are usually dominated by House Sparrows or House Finches and the occassional nuthatch, chickadee, etc. have to be cautious not to be overrun by the above species.

Larry
Larry Lade is offline  
Reply With Quote
BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Click here to Support BirdForum
Old Wednesday 29th October 2003, 21:19   #6
pauco
Старлинг фан
 
pauco's Avatar

 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: lancashire
Posts: 4,476
Hi Birdman.
its never easy to say whats right or wrong, each
garden varies so much, we have lived in our house for 11 years. we also are near woodland
with open farmland as well, so bird life has always
been near. 2 years ago we planted more hawthorn
hedges which now seem to be paying of as far as
shelter goes, I also leave rough areas to which seems to help not being lazy of course!! but appart from putting out an assortment of seeds
fruit, fats, and keeping 2 clean water areas for them. thats it, so all I can say is keep on plugging
away food out, water for them and in their own good time they will come as you said its still new land dont give up.
bert.
__________________


Paul.
pauco is offline  
Reply With Quote
BF Supporter 2004
Click here to Support BirdForum
Old Monday 3rd November 2003, 10:30   #7
k.k.stevenson1
Registered User
 
k.k.stevenson1's Avatar

 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Location: nottingham
Posts: 447
hi Birdman I have no garden just a small yard with 2 lines with14 feeders on a small table.I can have over 80 birds at a time mostly Goldfinches and Housesparrows try sunflower hearts.It might take a week or two but thats all Ken.
__________________
Gone are the days when she would sit me on her knee. All the best Ken..
k.k.stevenson1 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 3rd November 2003, 10:44   #8
birdman
Орнитолог-любитель
 
birdman's Avatar

 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Doncaster, UK
Posts: 5,428
Well, we sort of tried a mixture of stuff, seeds and fruits, fatballs and stuff...

Maybe now is the time to go the sunflower heart route - and see if we can't attract any goldfinches in to have a go at the teasels!!!

If my gardenlist is still small this time next year... I'll be well dischuffed!
birdman is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 3rd November 2003, 17:44   #9
christine
Crow
 
christine's Avatar

 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: north west London
Posts: 287
Maybe as winter closes in and food becomes shorter in supply you'll see an increase?
I had a bit of a lull bird wise in late summer but they're back with a vengeance im pleased to say.
Ive put out extra food and bird boxes too,ive noticed the wrens coming in and out of them frequently.
I know they use them to keep warm in winter,but they seem to be taking leaves in with them,are they lining it?

christine
__________________
christine
christine is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 3rd November 2003, 18:59   #10
Beverlybaynes
Mod Squad

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: NE Indiana, USA
Posts: 2,961
THis may seem like a very simplistic answer, Birdman, but do try tying a ribbon onto your feeder pole -- long enough to flutter in the breeze. The color makes no difference, as its the movement that attracts the eye.

The sunflower hearts will certainly help, true. But whatharm is there in trying something this simple? Your daughter's old hair ribbon, the ribbon off a gift or package . . .

And if you do try it, please let me know what happens!
__________________
beverlybaynes

Hold fast to dreams, for if dreams die, life is a broken-winged bird that cannot fly.
--Langston Hughes
Beverlybaynes is offline  
Reply With Quote
BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006
Click here to Support BirdForum
Old Monday 3rd November 2003, 20:51   #11
seb_seb
Registered User
 
seb_seb's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: walsall west mids england
Posts: 868
Ive heard that Goldfinches are particulary atrracted to feeders that swing in the wind.....maybe a ribbon has ther same affect
seb_seb is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Monday 3rd November 2003, 21:49   #12
saluki
Registered User
 
saluki's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jul 2003
Location: Cheshire
Posts: 1,113
"I live on a new housing development, and therefore have a new garden... but it is now 18 months old - ie 2 summers".

I don't think there's much you can do about it short term Birdman. You can supply all the food you like, but if the birds don't feel safe, I don't think they'll come. Many of them require thick cover such as hawthorn, etc. to escape raptors and, unfortunately, most new housing estates simply don't have enough mature cover. Starlings are perhaps an exception as they tend to feed in the open, often using their speed of flight to escape predation. Finches and tits simply don't have that speed, therefore thick cover close at hand is normally required. I have a thick privit hedge on one side of my garden and a huge overgrown hawthorn on the other. When Sparrowhawks pay a visit (which happens several times a day), the small birds dive for cover. I often see Spars crouched, cat-like, amongst the outer branches, peering in to the inner depths, attempting - usually in vane - to snatch a victim.

Be patient and, as the cover matures, I think the birds will start to appear. Enjoy your Starlings Birdman, they're one of my favourite birds :-)

saluki
saluki is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 4th November 2003, 17:40   #13
Geoff Brown
Registered User
 
Geoff Brown's Avatar

 
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Near Boston, Lincolnshire
Posts: 1,207
As an experiment tried just Linseed in one feeder. So far not many takers they all prefer the mixed seed, (as do the two rats!).
__________________
Geoff Brown
Geoff Brown is offline  
Reply With Quote
BF Supporter 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014
Click here to Support BirdForum
Old Tuesday 4th November 2003, 20:57   #14
birdman
Орнитолог-любитель
 
birdman's Avatar

 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Doncaster, UK
Posts: 5,428
Thanks to everyone who has replied since my last post... I'm taking everything on board, and as I am willing to try everything (!) will tie a ribbon to the feeder pole this weekend.

I'll will, of course, report any activity!
birdman is offline  
Reply With Quote
Old Tuesday 4th November 2003, 21:00   #15
steve_nova
Registered User
 
steve_nova's Avatar

 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 3,863
I had trouble getting anything to come to my feeders until that is I put out black sunflower seed. This seems to draw the Tit's and Finches in like a magnet, and they are now taking the other stuff too.
steve_nova is offline  
Reply With Quote
Advertisement
Reply


Thread Tools
Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Portugal 1999 trip report Reader Vacational Trip Reports 6 Monday 14th August 2006 14:39
Foxglove Covert, N. Yorkshire - a day out ringing birds. IanF Your Birding Day 4 Friday 27th February 2004 20:12
Bats eat birds on the wing peter hayes Birds & Birding 8 Sunday 29th June 2003 11:44
Do feeders change bird's habits? bristolbirder Food and Feeders 19 Sunday 25th May 2003 18:05
Parliament debates Wild Birds shock peter hayes Birds & Birding 28 Tuesday 18th February 2003 09:23

{googleads}

Fatbirder's Top 1000 Birding Websites

Search the net with ask.com
Help support BirdForum
Ask.com and get

Page generated in 0.20720506 seconds with 24 queries
All times are GMT. The time now is 07:02.