Dealing With Birdfeeder Bullies

Gold Post Medal for All Time! 858 Posts
March 6, 2008
Birds on feeder.


I have a bird feeder in the backyard and I have noticed a mocking bird totally taking over. It harasses all other birds, especially cardinals. The finches have stopped coming too. This is being going on for last 4-5 days. Help needed.

Hardiness Zone: 7b

Asad from Jonesboro, AR



I had this same "bullies at the birdfeer" problem last year with European starlings. I stopped feeding everyone and eventually the starlings moved on. Then I slowly resumed feeding, but only Niger and safflower seeds, two seeds bully birds generally don't find desirable, but only finches, chickadees, nuthatches, cardinals, and grosbeaks do. Slowly I added other seeds back in to lure in more types of birds. Everyone came back but the starlings (knocking on wood and crossing fingers).

Mockingbirds are notoriously territorial-especially during breeding season. One strategy might be to erect a second feeder in a different part of the yard that is out of sight of your first feeder. Most mockers will be so focused on defending the first feeder and won't even notice the second.

Another strategy is to erect some type of crate-like cage from wire or lattice to cover your current feeder. The holes need to be smaller than 2 inches to keep mocking birds (and starlings) out. If you use wire, make sure it's rigid and a wide enough gauge to prevent little feet from getting caught. The cage will allow smaller birds to get in, while keeping bullies out. Don't worry, I assure you the little guys will figure it out and resume feeding.


Some backyard birders have also found success by shortening or eliminating the perches on their tube feeders. Personally, I have not tried this, but the theory is that the smaller birds will still zoom by to grab seed, but instead of hanging out on a perch, they will take it out of harms way to eat it.

You can find more ideas for controlling bully birds at the National Wildlife Federation, here:

Good luck!


Comment Pin it! Was this helpful? Yes
Read More Comments


Share on ThriftyFunCheck out these photos. Click at right to share your own photo in this page.

Silver Post Medal for All Time! 418 Posts
February 21, 2017

I am having a problem being able to feed my song birds like I have in the past. Usually during the winter months, I've had no problem with cowbirds, but this year, they have been a real pest.

Cowbirds - on feeder

Comment Pin it! Like this photo? Yes

March 15, 2017

Many people maintain bird feeders for song birds. Therefore they are often dismayed when larger bully birds try to take over the feeder.


This is a page about keeping blackbirds out of bird feeders.

Blackbird at Bird Feeder

Read More... Pin it! Was this helpful? Yes
Home and Garden Gardening Birds & Bird HousesOctober 28, 2013
New Years Ideas!
Christmas Ideas!
Ask a Question
Share a Post
Better LivingBudget & FinanceBusiness and LegalComputersConsumer AdviceCoronavirusCraftsEducationEntertainmentFood and RecipesHealth & BeautyHolidays and PartiesHome and GardenMake Your OwnOrganizingParentingPetsPhotosTravel and RecreationWeddings
Published by ThriftyFun.
Desktop Page | View Mobile
Disclaimer | Privacy Policy | Contact Us
Generated 2022-12-20 00:09:25 in 3 secs. ⛅️️
© 1997-2022 by Cumuli, Inc. All Rights Reserved.