Spring seasonal tips

Your Spring Backyard Checklist

  • Use the Best Nest Builder, made of cotton fibers, to provide nesting material.
  • Offer mealworms to help the adults feed their young. Orioles feed their young caterpillars and are especially attracted to mealworm feeders while young are in the nest.
  • Use calcium-rich suet during egg laying time such as Pacific Bird® and Supply suet cakes and Attractor™ nutritional suet plugs in various flavors.
  • Offer suet pellets and dried or live mealworms in a dish, tray or platform feeder. These are more accessible to cardinals, who have difficulty eating from a suet cage.
  • Use liquid or powder nectar with Nectar Defender™ already added to keep your nectar fresh longer. Great for use at the cabin when larger capacity nectar feeders will be unattended for a week.
  • Attract orioles with nectar (change every three days), oranges, mealworms and grape jelly. Put feeders out the last week of April.
  • Do not use Kool-Aid®, honey, or artificial sweeteners in nectar feeders. Easy-to-use nectar concentrate is available for purchase in liquid or powder. Put feeders out the last week of April.
  • Hang nectar feeders from an ant moat filled with water or an Antguard® , which repels ants.
  • Scrub birdbaths with 9 parts water to 1 part bleach. Rinse well. For a safe and healthy bird bath add Bird Bath Protector™ to the just-cleaned bath.
  • Add a Water Wiggler™ to your birdbath. It attracts more birds and prevents mosquitoes from laying their eggs by moving the water constantly.
  • Store seed in the freezer or outside the house (in metal containers ) to avoid moths. Hang a moth trap, available at our stores, near seed containers in the garage.
  • Use Golden Safflower to avoid attracting grackles and starlings while still attracting cardinals, goldfinches, chickadees and house finches.
  • Serve Bye, Bye Starling to avoid attracting starlings while still providing a bird seed mix.
  • Apply Window Alerts™ to prevent just-fledged juvenile birds from hitting your windows.
  • Found a baby bird? If it is sparsely feathered and not capable of hopping, walking, flitting or gripping tightly to your finger, it’s a nestling: look for the nearby nest and put the bird back in the nest or put it on a protected branch. If the bird is feathered and capable of hopping and flitting it is a fledgling and should be left alone: the parents are nearby and are watching and feeding the fledgling.
  • Found an injured bird? Contact the Wildlife Rehab Center at 651-486-9453. wrcmn.org
  • Plan to add berry producing plants like high bush cranberry, plants for cover like arborvitae and seed producing plants like purple cone flower and sunflower to your backyard.
A bee lingers around the port of a nectar feeder while a hummingbird feeds
Rub mint leaves or mint extract on nectar ports to deter bees from feeders.