I notice they will eat millet but not Nyjer Seeds. We've created informative articles that you can come back to again and again when you have questions or want to learn more! The bulbous, thistle-like shape and scraggly foliage of the plant, however, can put off gardeners who prefer more groomed flowers in their landscaping. It is also possible to grow safflowers as part of a birdseed garden, and allowing these seed-bearing flowers to go to seed naturally will provide a ready source of food for foraging birds. Safflower has a thick shell, hard for some birds to crack open, but is a favorite among cardinals. Only a small percentage of people feeding birds offer safflower. Sign up to receive the latest and greatest articles from our site automatically each week (give or take)...right to your inbox. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. Change Foods – House sparrows eat a wide range of seeds and grain, but they especially love cracked corn and sunflower seeds. ... We'll see how well this works. Paul Like Save December 6, 2009 at 1:57AM. In my yard, squirrels seem completely indifferent to nyjer seed. Sparrows are weaver finch birds. According to some sources, House Sparrows, European Starlings, and squirrels don’t like safflower, but in some areas seem to have developed a taste for it. As a commodity, it is as old as time. The birds that like these striped sunflower seeds are the big-billed seed eaters: cardinals, grosbeaks, towhees. Some grosbeaks, chickadees, doves, and native sparrows also eat it. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. My squirrels don't bother my safflower feeders but if there is sunflower in with the safflower they'll flick out the safflower to get to the sunflower. Email this Page. They are classified as passerine birds. The Spruce uses cookies to provide you with a great user experience. Sparrows are small plump birds, which are brown or grey. They go to the feeder but find seed that isn’t in their diet, or seed that is too small. Even though it is a well-known fact that safflower seeds are excellent food source for American songbirds, not many people out there know which other species eat these seeds – and which species detest them. Many squirrels will also avoid safflower seed and will not disturb feeders where safflower is offered, though chipmunks have been known to prefer the seed. For example, they enjoy eating canary seed, black oil sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, and suet. Birds that Feed on Safflower Seeds. They will also eat some fruit, including oranges, apples, bananas, and grapes. I've had House Finches eat safflower seeds but they prefer sunflower seeds. Display Modes: Linear Mode. Switch to Threaded Mode. Even some common songbird which often visit your home has several interesting attributes which you as a bird watching enthusiast are bound to relish; but for that you will have to do something to attract these birds and make sure that they stay in your garden for a while. In such circumstances, resorting to safflower seeds alone without mixing them with any other bird food can be of a great help. Replace sunflower seeds with safflower to discourage them at feeders. Because many birds that prefer safflower are larger species that require adequate perching space, safflower seeds are best offered in large hopper, tube, or platform feeders. Replace these treats with Nyjer or safflower seed, nuts, fruit, nectar, or suet instead, and while they may still sample the menu, they won’t gorge as much and other birds will have more opportunities to eat. One of the easiest measure of doing this is to install bird feeders in your garden. Safflower Seed For Birds. As we mentioned earlier, seeds of safflower don’t just provide various nutrients for songbirds, but also double up as repellents for some larger, aggressive birds as well as rodent species. Would you like to write for us? 6789 Quail Hill Pkwy, Suite 211 Irvine CA 92603. Thread Tools: Show Printable Version. Birds That Eat Safflower Seed. All these species are notorious as ‘feeder hogs’ – a term bestowed upon them for their tendency to chase other bird species away from the feeders. Safflower seeds are the seeds of the annual safflower plant, Carthamus tinctorius. Different birdseed mixtures have different proportions of safflower seeds. The proportion of safflower to sunflower can gradually be changed as they accept the new food. Widely used for producing edible oil at one point of time, today safflower seeds are also used for making the bird feeders squirrel-proof. We hope you enjoy this website. While the squirrels, who are known to pounce on bird feeders, also detest the bitter taste of safflower seeds, chipmunks do feed on them. If you would like to offer a mix of seeds to attract house sparrows, try using sunflower seeds, millet or corn. The list of birds which eat safflower seeds is topped by the cardinals – crested thick-billed North American birds. These are annual flowers but allowing the seed heads to remain on the stalks can permit some seeds to fall and naturally reseed the area for the next year's growth. Safflower seeds are a useful but relatively uncommon type of birdseed, but because of their great nutrition and which birds eat them, they are gradually growing in popularity among backyard birders. Thistle or Nyjer Seeds Nyjer or thistle seed (as it also commonly referred to) is another favorite of finches (and especially goldfinches), chickadees, mourning doves and sparrows.