We’re passionate about birds and nature. That’s why we opened a Wild Birds Unlimited Nature Shop in our community.
10 Crispin Court, Suite D 102
Asheville, NC 28803
Phone: (828) 687-9433
Fax: (828) 774-5537
Email: Send Message
Mon - Fri: 9:30 am - 5:30 pm
Sat - Sat: 9:30 am - 5:30 pm
Sun - Sun: 12:00 pm - 5:00 pm
It’s really hard to think of wild birds as being loyal friends.
After all, they are truly one of the freest creatures on the planet, able to fly anywhere at anytime with nothing to bind them to any single location.
But birds, like humans, are creatures of habit and bird banding studies have shown that many of our winter birds, such as Juncos and native sparrows, utilize the same wintering location year after year.
With a potential lifespan of over 10 years, it is likely that the Junco gleaning millet off of the ground below one of your feeders has spent many previous winters as your loyal backyard guest. And recent research shows that is only half the story!
These birds are not only loyal to a specific location, but also to a single feeder! The study showed that the only time they abandoned their favorite feeder was during periods of cold weather when the feeder was placed in a location too exposed to the wind.
So help your birds stay loyal and warm by locating your feeders in a sheltered location out of the wind. The east or southeast side of a house or near a row of trees or evergreens is ideal.
Once you have them in a safe and sheltered location, be sure to keep your feeders filled with the high-energy, high-fat foods that provide your birds with the crucial nutrition they need to survive the coldest month of the year.
Stop by our store for more expert advice and quality products that will help your birds to stay true blue and warm, too this winter.
Right now chickadees, nuthatches, titmice and jays are hiding food to retrieve and eat at a later time. This behavior is called “caching.” Caching helps birds survive during bad weather and when food sources are low. These birds can store hundreds of seeds a day. Each seed is placed in a different location and they generally remember where each one is, even a month later.
By providing an easily accessible food source, you can help your birds with their caching needs.
Chickadees prefer to cache black oil sunflower seeds; often eating a small portion before hiding it in and under bark, dead leaves, knotholes, clusters of pine needles, gutters, shingles and in the ground. Chickadees cache more in the middle of the day when visiting feeders.
Titmice are rather particular. They choose the largest sunflower seeds available to eat and cache. Titmice and chickadees like to cache seeds within 130 feet of bird feeders; your yard or a neighbor's yard. Often, they tuck seeds into the bark and crevices of a wood pile or on a large branch. They even cache them under mulch in a garden.
Nuthatches prefer heavier sunflower seeds over the lighter ones. Be sure to have some sunflower chips in your blend, too, as they like these 25% more than one in the shell. They cache more in the morning and prefer to hide foods on deeply furrowed tree trunks and the underside of branches. Nuthatches are also known to hide seeds under a shingle or behind wooden siding.
Jays love to cache peanuts, sunflower seeds and acorns. They are especially fond of peanuts in the shell. They bury them in the ground and are known to cache about 100 in a day; emptying a feeder in no time. Watch for them make repeated trips to your feeders (or an oak tree) and fly off. They can travel up to two miles to bury their nutritious treasure.