How To Attract Cardinals?

How To Attract Cardinals

Cardinals are one of the most beautiful and popular birds in North America, known for their striking bright red plumage and distinctive songs.

Cardinal in Garden
Cardinal in Garden

Attracting these lovely creatures to your backyard is a great way to bring some natural beauty into your life.

In this blog post, we will explore how to attract cardinals to your yard by providing them with food, water sources, nesting sites, and shelter.

Understanding Cardinals

Cardinals belong to the family Cardinalidae which includes buntings and grosbeaks. Cardinals live throughout North, Central, and South America

There are two species of cardinals found in North America – the Northern cardinal (Cardinalis cardinalis) and the Pyrrhuloxia (Cardinalis sinuatus). These birds prefer open woodlands, brushy areas, or edges near forests where they can find food sources like seeds from trees or fruits.

The male Northern cardinal is well-known for its bright red feathers while female cardinals have more muted colors with reddish-brown tones on their wings as well as greyish-brown bodies.

When it comes to feeding behavior, both males and females actively search for seeds using their strong beak that’s perfect for cracking open tough shells like those found on safflower seeds or black oil sunflower seeds.

How To Attract Cardinals To Your Garden

Build or Buy the Right Bird Feeder

One of the simplest ways to attract cardinals is by setting up a bird feeder that provides appropriate perches such as platform feeders rather than tube feeders which may not be suitable due to their larger size.

Cardinal Feeding in platform feeder
Cardinal Feeding in platform feeder

To ensure Cardinals have ample space to feed, it’s important to note that they do not turn their bodies. Opting for a forward-facing platform feeder is a smart choice as it has been known to attract them.

Provide Them The Food Cardinals Like

To keep them happy at your feeder consider filling it up with wild bird’s favorite foods such as cracked corn mixed with black oil sunflower seeds or striped sunflower seeds. Safflower seed is also a favorite of cardinals.

Cardinals enjoy eating peanuts, corn, and berries. Fill feeders regularly, especially in the early morning and late evening.

Protection from Predator Such As Cats

Predators like cats or hawks can be a threat to Cardinal birds so make sure to have some shrubs or trees around the feeder that will provide cover.

Cardinal in garden
Cardinal in garden

Cardinals are known to feel more secure when they have access to shrubbery for foraging. It is advisable to clear away snow during the winter season to ensure they can still have access to seeds.

Make Sure To Offer Running Water

Cardinals love fresh water too, so including a bird bath is an excellent idea! It’s essential to keep it clean and refilled regularly for their health and enjoyment.

Cardinals and other birds are especially drawn to moving water.

Supply Natural Nesting Material

During the breeding season, cardinals require natural nesting material such as twigs, leaves, or grasses which they use to create nests in bushes, shrubs, and trees. Providing these materials nearby can help attract them and encourage them to stay longer in your yard.

Read More: Top 7 Flowers That Hummingbirds Love

These birds usually have multiple broods annually but rarely reuse a nest. Therefore, they require a surplus of nesting materials. Additionally, planting shrubs in your yard can provide them with a habitat.

Landscaping And Gardening For Cardinals

Best Plants And Trees To Attract Cardinals

Cardinals are attracted by bright red colors found in fruits such as berries; consider planting native fruit trees like dogwood or service berry along with bright flowers like marigolds that will catch their eye!

Tips For Bird-Friendly Landscaping

For optimal results try creating layers of vegetation by planting tall plants at the back of your garden bed while leaving shorter ones closer towards the front. This creates hiding places where birds can feel safe whilst still being able to feed on insects found within dense foliage.

Points To Remember

  • Attracting cardinals requires providing food sources such as safflower seeds mixed with black oil sunflower seeds, berries.
  • They prefer platform feeders over tube feeders due to their larger size.
  • Providing running water through bird baths is essential for attracting wild birds.
  • Natural nesting materials should be supplied nearby to encourage breeding habits.
  • Bright red colors found in fruits such as berries will attract cardinals, so consider planting native fruit trees like dogwood or serviceberry with bright flowers like marigolds.

Frequently Asked Question

What kind of bird feeder should I use to attract cardinals?

Platform feeders are best for attracting cardinals, as they have larger sizes and need appropriate perches to feed.

What kind of food do cardinals like?

Cardinals enjoy eating cracked corn mixed with black oil sunflower seeds or striped sunflower seeds, and safflower seed is also a favorite.

Do cardinals need shelter from predators?

Yes, predators like cats or hawks can be a threat to cardinals, so it’s important to provide cover in the form of shrubs or trees around the feeder

What kind of plants and trees should I plant to attract cardinals?

Cardinals are attracted to bright red colors found in fruits such as berries, so planting native fruit trees like dogwood or serviceberry and bright flowers like marigolds is a good idea.

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