Wild Bird Foods

Wild Bird Foods
A wild bird's diet can consist of nectar, seeds, insects and fruit. Depending on the species, a wild bird may eat a combination of several types of foods or dine on a one-category diet. Humans can help preserve avian populations by protecting wild bird food sources.


Many wild bird species eat nectar from flowers. Tubular blooms--such as the cardinal flower, petunia and honeysuckle--produce sweet juices that attract colorful hummingbirds and orioles. According to the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, nectar can be artificially made to attract wild birds to a designated area. Stirring a simple combination of a half cup of sugar and two cups of boiling water can produce a tasty nectar that wild birds will love.



Wild birds feast on seeds. Species such as the dove, cardinal, blackbird, jay and woodpecker crack open shells and eat seeds they find in bird feeders, flowers and plants. Wild birds eat seeds like black-oil and striped sunflower seeds, thistle, safflower and millet. Landscaping a yard with seed-producing plants--such as sunflowers, zinnias and marigolds--will attract a wide variety of bird species.


Insects provide wild birds with much-needed nutrition for growth and flight. Depending on the species, a bird's diet can consist entirely or partially of insect meals. Wild birds help keep pesky insect populations (such as gnats, mosquitoes and flies) under control. Some species that enjoy eating insects are the robin, blue jay, purple martin and sparrow.


Fruit-producing plants attract diverse wild bird species. Throughout the summer and fall, wild birds can be observed feasting on fruit-yielding plants (such as strawberry patches and cherry trees). Attract mockingbirds and orioles to your backyard by skewering watermelon, orange and apple slices to a bird feeder. In addition to providing wild birds with a sweet, healthy treat, many fruits attract insects that also nourish avian species.


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