Different birds eat different foods, which is why putting out a variety of foodstuffs will attract a wider range of species. Typical foods include:
* Peanuts – good traditional food, best loved by the tit family but also taken by starlings, sparrows and greenfinches * Sunflower seeds – especially loved by greenfinches * Mealworms/ waxworms – not for the squeamish, live food is increasingly popular, good in the breeding season for robins, wrens, thrushes and many more * Nyjer/Niger Seeds – especially loved by goldfinches * Fat cake – tits, blackcap * Table seed (mixed corn/wheat/pinhead oats) – collared dove
1. Sunflower Seeds : Black-oil seeds rank as the single best wild bird food. These small. thin-shelled seeds are easy to open and are rich in fat and protein. Virtually every bird that visits backyard bird feeders eats black-oil seeds. They work well by themselves or as the primary ingredient in quality mixes.
2. Nuts : Peanuts, walnuts, pecans, almonds and other nuts are natural, nutritious, energy foods for many birds, especially woodpeckers, jays, chickadees, and nuthatches. Nuts are more expensive than sunflower seeds. But after birders discover how much birds love nuts, there's no turning back! But squirrels and chipmunks love nuts, too, so nut feeders must be as squirrel-resistant as possible
3. Nyjer (thistle) : Nyjer is a high-calorie finch magnet. Imported from Africa and Asia, again it can be pricey. Doves and many native sparrows clean up the spillage from the tiny seed ports of finch feeders, which are designed to exclude larger birds. Contrary to its popular nickname, nyjer is not a thistle, It will not germinate and invade backyards and gardens. Nyjer is sterilized before it enters the USA.