Getting Rid of Blackbirds

Question:

I would like to know if any members know how I can get rid of Blackbirds. I have 2 feeders and they caused all my Pretty Songbirds to leave. I do have 2 pair of Morning Doves that are not afraid of the Blackbirds. All these Blackbirds do is eat up the seed and fight amongst themselves. I have tried not to put seed out, but they still hang around.

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Thanks for your help.
Sherry from Valdosta, GA

Answer:

Sherry,

I have dealt with a similar situation in the past (Starlings); here are a few strategies to try:

  1. Blackbirds like to feed from open ground feeders and they prefer soft food like (rolled oats, suet (fat), cooked rice, sunflower chips and cheese). Try placing an open ground feeder farther away from your existing feeders and offering the Blackbirds some of their favorite foods. This will help keep them occupied and away from your main feeders until they move on.

  2. If you have a store specializing in bird feeding supplies (or a farm supply store), you might check to see if they sell feeders equipped with weighted perches. These are hopper-style feeders with perches set to close the feeding window when triggered by the weight of a larger bird or squirrel.

  3. If you're using tube feeders, shorten the perches to make it difficult for the Blackbirds to land. If you use hopper-style feeders, consider adding a few tube feeders that will only accommodate smaller birds.

  4. Fill feeders with just one type of feed (e.g. one feeder filled with black oil sunflower seeds, another with safflower seeds, etc.) Blackbirds seem to love the seeds that most other songbirds waste (milo, millet and cracked corn). Avoid buying generic mixes that contain a lot of these "fillers".

Hang in there! They will eventually move on.

Ellen

About The Author: Ellen Brown is our Green Living and Gardening Expert. Click here to ask Ellen a question! Ellen Brown is an environmental writer and photographer and the owner of Sustainable Media, an environmental media company that specializes in helping businesses and organizations promote eco-friendly products and services. Contact her on the web at http://www.sustainable-media.com

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Answers:

Getting Rid of Blackbirds

The problem with using any type of device to rid the area of Blackbirds, is that it usually scares away all the other birds, laying a plastic snake on the ground by the feeder will work, or having a owl figure sitting nearby.
Joy from Culbertson, MT (07/22/2006)

By montanaczech

Getting Rid of Blackbirds

Grackles are not gentle they kill small birds, too. (04/09/2007)

Getting Rid of Blackbirds

You can try using a sonic or ultrasonic deterrent, they are sometimes able to be specialized to only detract one kind of bird. You might be able to find one that plays distress calls of Blackbirds, it'll scare them but not frighten the other birds. Bird-X offers eco-friendly and humane products that are very effective. (04/21/2008)

By Kathleen

Getting Rid of Blackbirds

I have a major problem w/Grackles. Not sure if that is the Blackbird you refer to. I have to totally alter the way I feed the birds when they arrive in late Winter and stay until the end of Summer. Hate them. Feeder hogs, mean too. I put all my open fly through feeders in the shed till Fall.

I use only small feeders that small birds can perch on or cling to. I use the upside down type of suet feeder and put all the others away till Fall. No seed mixes, because they usually contain corn (not good, as was stated). Sunflower seeds only in the small feeders and then still sometimes they manage to get on the small feeders.

They hate Safflower seeds so I usually end up switching to that. I don't think the other birds like it much either, but at least I still have some birds visiting my feeders. I throw safflower seed and Nyger thistle seed on the ground for the Doves (some people hate Doves, but I like them and don't have a ton), some of the ground feeders will eat the Nyger and Safflower, but the Grackles won't. I tried feeding the Grackles away from my feeders. They just eat up "their" food and then come eat up all the other. Hate them. Oh, I said that. (12/03/2008)

By Mrs-dee

Getting Rid of Blackbirds

I put fruit in pantyhose and hung it up on my feeder. I haven't seen a blackbird since. (03/01/2009)

By Awesomegurl

Getting Rid of Blackbirds

I also have a Blackbird problem. I use a bulk feeder that holds about 12 lbs. of feed. I normally fill it once or twice a week. When the Blackbirds come in the spring I have to fill it once a day. Enough is enough so I built a cage to go over my feeder. I tried to make it from wire fence but could not find one the right size.

The one I made is redwood 1/4 inch thick strips ripped to 3/8 wide. The important thing was the 1-1/8 inch gaps between the strips to allow the song birds in and keep the Blackbirds out. The 1-1/8inch gap was a guess, but worked great. It took about 1 day for the smaller birds to figure out the feeder, but they use it now as though the cage wasn't there. (See picture) (04/02/2009)

By bsat

RE: Getting Rid of Blackbirds

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