Feeding Winter Birds: Best Feeders & Seeds

Winter Birds

Feed them. They're hungry!

To attract the largest variety of backyard birds, it's best to pair the right bird feeders with high energy foods that keep birds healthy and coming back for more. During extreme winter weather, the food you provide may be the only source of nutrition for the wild birds in your area. The bird you save today could be worth many more next spring!


Pair Birds with the Premium Bird Feeders: Since birds are attracted to different types of feeder designs, you can increase your odds of seeing your favorite birds by matching the bird species with a specific type of feeder below:

Tube Feeder: American Goldfinch, House Finch, Nuthatch

Platform Feeder: House Finch, Blue Jay, Northern Cardinal, Song Sparrow

Hopper Feeder: House Finch, Blue Jay, Northern Cardinal 

Suet Feeder: Northern Cardinal, Nuthatch, Warbler, Woodpecker, Wren

Nyjer or Thistle Seed Tube Feeder: American Goldfinch, House Finch, Purple Finch 


When bird lovers feed their backyard birds with a variety of expensive seed, usually, the squirrels are being fed, too... Those furry bandits are quick, resourceful and usually have plenty of time to figure out how to get into most average bird feeders. But when squirrels have gone beyond the ‘cute’ stage, it's time to take action with a squirrel-resistant feeder. These sophisticated feeders will keep uninvited guests away from the birds’ buffet. You’ll also get a good laugh when you see some of these popular squirrel busting feeders in action! 


Caged Squirrel-Proof Feeders
Tubular feeders are well-guarded by cage-like grids that birds can flit through. They act like prison bars for squirrels and larger birds. The wire grid is chew-proof and keeps the squirrels away from the seed tube.


Baffle-Style Squirrel-Proof Feeders
Bird feeders with domes or smooth baffles protect valuable bird seed as well as the  feeder. Squirrels and raccoons have a hard time climbing the feeder and will end up slip-sliding away. The baffles can provide a feeder with the perfect defense system against squirrel damage and will allow the birds to eat in peace!


Weight-Activated Squirrel-Proof Feeders: Brome Squirrel Buster Feeder
Another clever way to squirrel-proof a feeder is to use a Weight-Activated Feeder. When the heavier weight of the squirrel triggers a spring, it closes off the access to the seed supply. When he leaves, the seed is available to your favorite birds again.


Electric & Motorized Squirrel-Proof Feeders: Droll Yankee Feeders... The Flipper, Whipper & Dipper:
Each of these mechanical-type feeders keep squirrels off balance and away from the birdseed. Weight-triggered bird feeders operate on the principle that uses the squirrel’s weight to trigger a battery-powered motor to flip or spin the feeder’s perch.

Although, no squirrel-proof feeder is perfect, we stock a good selection of the most inventive and reliable squirrel-resistant feeders available. We want to offer you every chance to create a bird-friendly habitat for your favorite, seed-eating birds—laughs are guaranteed!



Feed Birds High Energy Seeds in Winter: During the colder months, some birds such as tiny finches, will eat the equivalent of one-third of their body weight every day! It’s best to offer them Nyjer seed—a very small, oily seed that’s full of energy. Cardinals love sunflower meats, black oil sunflower seeds (easily identified by their dark shells), and millet seeds… and they’re all high in fat. Safflower is a white seed that is very high in protein and fat. It’s a bitter seed that attracts finches, mourning doves, however squirrels, grackles, starlings & blackbirds prefer to dine somewhere else. Good!




A premium mix of sunflower meats, white and red millet, peanut pieces and cracked corn.  This blend is designed to entice songbirds but reduce waste around the feeder (no hulls).



Wild birds love the quality ingredients and you’ll appreciate the low waste mixture of black and striped sunflower, safflower, white millet, sunflower meats, cracked corn, red millet, peanut pieces, Nyjer (thistle) seed and grit.



Attract all types of colorful songbirds at a moderate price with black sunflower seeds, safflower, white millet, red millet and clean, cracked corn. No milo included.



Invite bright-red cardinals, blue jays, nuthatches and other wild birds with high-energy black sunflower, striped sunflower seeds, safflower, white millet, peanut pieces… only their favorites!



Invite those cheerful, black-capped chickadees with this special mix of ……



A blend of Nyjer seed, sunflower meats, hulled sunflower, red millet, canary seed and canary grit that is perfect for goldfinches, purple finches, siskins and other small songbirds.


Woodpecker varieties, like the little ‘Downy’ woodpecker and its look-a-like, the ‘Hairy’ woodpecker or the Red-Headed woodpecker, will become regulars at your bird feeder when you offer them this mix of peanuts, sunflower meats, shell corn, black sunflower seeds, dried raisins and dried cherries.



Whether in the shell or not, peanuts are a high calorie, fat-rich nut that appeals to many backyard birds such as nuthatches, blue jays, woodpeckers and chickadees. Since nuts don’t freeze, they are a perfect food for winter birds. (Squirrels love them too.)*



Suet offers birds a super, high-energy food in many shapes and sizes. Suet cakes, cylinders and suet logs are high in fat, protein, and calories and are enjoyed by many birds year around, but especially in fall and winter when seed and insects are scarce. especially nuthatches, chickadees and woodpeckers. Suet cakes are  even more enticing when additional ingredients such as peanuts/peanut butter, seeds & fruit are added. If you have problems with squirrels eating the suet before the birds get a chance, you might want to try suet with hot pepper flakes. Birds still like it and squirrels definitely do not.



Birds need water, even in winter. The winter months can be difficult for wild birds.  Help them survive by including a heated bird bath in your landscape.


*Hint… hint…
Keep squirrels happy with their own feeder. It often helps to feed squirrels with a separate feeder in an area distanced from bird feeders. Keep those persistent critters busy with their own favorites such as dried corn and peanuts.