The 5 Best Bird Feeders for Small Birds – Our Choices!

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Small birds are under attack. No, not by hawks or cats (although those threats are real), but by the big bullies of the bird world – the crows, jays, and ravens.

These larger bully birds can intimidate the smaller ones away from food, making it difficult for them to get a meal. But with the correct feeder in place, you can help small birds get the nutrition they need to thrive and protect their snacks from more aggressive birds.

Product Name
Best Squirrel Proof
Nature's Rhythm Outdoor Hanging Bird Feeder
Best UV-Stabilized Materials
Droll Yankees Dorothy’s Cardinal Domed Bird Feeder
Best Easy Cleaning
LUJII Colored Transparent Window Bird Feeder
Image
Nature's Rhythm Outdoor Hanging Bird Feeder Cage PC Tube Squirrel Proof Wild Bird Feeder with Large Metal Seed Guard Deterrent
Mr IRONSTONE Bird Feeder Poles and Hangers for Outside, Shepherds Hook for Hanging Plants Hangers Outdoor 76” Bird Feeder Stand with 5 Prongs Base, 2 Pack
LUJII Colored Transparent Window Bird Feeder for Outside, All One Piece Design Non-breakable, Accommodates Large Birds Like Cardinals or Blue Birds, Lift-up Tray for Easy Cleaning & Refilling, Blue
Customer Rating
Material
Metal
Plastic
Polycarbonate
Mounting Type
Hanging Mount
Hang or Pole Mount
Window Mount
Weight
Weight: 1.52 Pounds
Weight: 1 Pounds
Weight: 1.1 Pounds
Size
6.89"L x 6.89"W x 10.24"H
15.18"L x 8.03"W x 15.06"H
8.78 x 8.54 x 4.61 inches
Best Squirrel Proof
Product Name
Nature's Rhythm Outdoor Hanging Bird Feeder
Image
Nature's Rhythm Outdoor Hanging Bird Feeder Cage PC Tube Squirrel Proof Wild Bird Feeder with Large Metal Seed Guard Deterrent
Customer Rating
Material
Metal
Mounting Type
Hanging Mount
Weight
Weight: 1.52 Pounds
Size
6.89"L x 6.89"W x 10.24"H
Best UV-Stabilized Materials
Product Name
Droll Yankees Dorothy’s Cardinal Domed Bird Feeder
Image
Mr IRONSTONE Bird Feeder Poles and Hangers for Outside, Shepherds Hook for Hanging Plants Hangers Outdoor 76” Bird Feeder Stand with 5 Prongs Base, 2 Pack
Customer Rating
Material
Plastic
Mounting Type
Hang or Pole Mount
Weight
Weight: 1 Pounds
Size
15.18"L x 8.03"W x 15.06"H
Best Easy Cleaning
Product Name
LUJII Colored Transparent Window Bird Feeder
Image
LUJII Colored Transparent Window Bird Feeder for Outside, All One Piece Design Non-breakable, Accommodates Large Birds Like Cardinals or Blue Birds, Lift-up Tray for Easy Cleaning & Refilling, Blue
Customer Rating
Material
Polycarbonate
Mounting Type
Window Mount
Weight
Weight: 1.1 Pounds
Size
8.78 x 8.54 x 4.61 inches

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Here are five of the best bird feeders for small birds, as well as some tips on how to keep those pesky bullies at bay.

Nature’s Rhythm Outdoor Hanging Bird Feeder

Nature's Rhythm Outdoor Hanging Bird Feeder Cage PC Tube Squirrel Proof Wild Bird Feeder with Large Metal Seed Guard Deterrent
  • Size: 6.89x6.89x10.24inch. Holds up to 1.5 lb Seed.
  • Effective design: The iron cage can prevent food from being eaten by squirrels and other animals. Four evenly spaced feeding ports...
  • High-quality material: high-quality steel cage, strong and durable.

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Nature’s Rhythm Outdoor Hanging Bird Feeder is a great product. The caged design only allows birds of a certain size to access the food. This is great because it prevents smaller birds from getting in and eating it all.

There are also four feeding ports that accommodate multiple birds at once, making it a great choice for those with larger flocks. Additionally, the squirrel-proof design keeps squirrels from raiding the feeder and taking all the food.

One downside, however, is that the seed storage is small and often needs to be refilled on a daily basis. But overall, this is an excellent bird feeder that I would definitely recommend.

Pros:

  • The caged design only allows birds of a certain size to access food
  • 4 feeding ports accommodate multiple birds at once
  • Squirrel proof

Cons:

  • Small seed storage – often needs refilling daily
  • Not suited for the smallest of seeds

Droll Yankees Dorothy’s Cardinal Domed Bird Feeder

Droll Yankees 344318 DCF Dorothys Cardinal Platform Feeder, Birdseed, Fruit, Suet, or Mealworms, 15-Inch
  • CAPACITY: Platform bird feeder holds up to 1 pound of seed, fruit, suet, or mealworms
  • PLATFORM: 13-inch-diameter platform makes it easy for multiple birds to feed at once
  • DOME COVER: 15-inch-diameter dome protects food and can be moved up or down to control bird size

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Droll Yankees Dorothy’s Cardinal Domed Bird Feeder is a top-quality product that is sure to appeal to bird enthusiasts. It is made of high-quality materials that are UV-stabilized, so the food stays fresh.

The feeder also has an adjustable dome that can be used to limit the size of the feeding birds. This is a great feature, as it makes it possible to attract a variety of different birds to your yard. The transparent dome offers great viewing, so you can watch the birds while they feed. The feeder is also easy to assemble and use.

However, the cost of the product seems steep for what it is. Additionally, the feeder is not squirrel proof, so if you have a problem with squirrels raiding your bird seed feeders, this might not be the best choice for you.

Pros:

  • Adjustable dome to limit the size of feeding birds
  • The transparent dome offers great viewing
  • UV-stabilized materials keep food fresh

Cons:

  • Costly

Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone Bird Feeder

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone Bird Feeder is a great, affordable feeder for those who have problems with squirrels and large, bossy birds raiding their bird feeders.

The weight-activated perches ensure that only smaller birds are able to feed, while the large seed capacity means that you can fill it up and not have to worry about refilling it often.

The small perches also discourage larger birds from feeding, so you don’t have to worry about them taking all the food. However, the springs wear out quickly with heavy use, so it’s not ideal for people with many squirrels visiting their feeder.

Pros:

  • Weight activated perches
  • 6 ports
  • Large seed capacity
  • Small perches to discourage larger birds

Cons:

  • Springs wear out quickly with heavy use

Kingsyard Metal Finch Bird Feeder

Kingsyard Metal Finch Bird Feeders for Outside, Hanging Tube Mesh Feeder for Nyjer/Thistle, 3 lbs Seed Capacity, Weatherproof, Great for Attracting Wild Bird, Yellow
  • STURDY DESIGN: Attractive garden design. All Parts in metal. Anti-UV coating construction ensures durability for years! Features...
  • THE BIRDS WILL LOVE IT: Seeds remain fresh with built-in, precipitation drainage holes. Seed tray and mesh surface allows for...
  • EASY TO REFILL AND CLEAN: Holds up to 3 lbs. of Nyjer/Thistle seeds. The lid is easy to lift for effortless filling and the base...

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

This bird feeder is perfect for small birds like finches. It is made of sturdy metal and the design is weather-proof, so it will keep the seed dry in bad weather.

The base of the feeder is a little small, so it needs to be refilled more often than some other bird feeders, but that is a small price to pay for the enjoyment of watching these beautiful creatures at your feeder.

The small size of the feeder also makes it easy to clean and maintain. If you are looking for a bird feeder that is both aesthetically pleasing and functional, this is the perfect choice for you.

However, some customers have reported that the feeder rusts quickly, so it may not be the best choice for those who live in humid climates.

Pros:

  • Sturdy metal construction
  • Perfect for small birds like finches
  • Easy to clean and maintain

Cons:

  • Rusts quickly in humid climates
  • The base is a little small – needs to be refilled more often than some bird feeders

LUJII Colored Transparent Window Bird Feeder

Sale
LUJII Colored Transparent Window Bird Feeder for Outside, All One Piece Design Non-breakable, Accommodates Large Birds Like Cardinals or Blue Birds, Lift-up Tray for Easy Cleaning & Refilling, Blue
  • The Only Blue Colored yet Transparent Feeder: If you are tired of the boring clear window feeders out there, this blue colored yet...
  • All One Piece 100% Shatterproof: Our innovative, modern feeder is produced via injection molding instead of simply gluing together...
  • Strongest Suction Cups that Never Falls off: It’s able to carry up to 22lb weight for months without falling off, no worry about...

Last update on 2023-02-03 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

The LUJII Colored Transparent Window Bird Feeder is perfect for smaller birds. The shallow design does not provide a lot of room for larger birds to perch, so they tend to avoid it together.

The window bird feeder is made of high-quality, durable plastic and the colors are very pretty. It attaches to any window with suction cups and has a clear viewing area so you can watch the birds up close.

The only downside is that it needs to be refilled more often than some other bird feeders because of its small size.

The backless design also allows for optimal viewing from the window. Additionally, the feeder comes apart easily for cleaning – a plus in my book!

Pros:

  • The shallow design is not large enough to comfortably perch larger birds
  • Backless design for optimal window viewing
  • Comes apart for easy cleaning

Cons:

  • Not all birds are comfortable eating at the window

What Makes a Good Feeder for Small Birds?

The main reason to discourage large birds from feeders is that they can dominate the feeding area and scare away smaller birds. This can be frustrating for bird enthusiasts who are trying to watch and photograph small birds.

Additionally, large birds can sometimes damage feeders with their powerful beaks.

The best bird feeders for small birds are usually made of metal or plastic and have a shallow design. The feeding area should be small enough that larger birds cannot comfortably perch there but large enough to accommodate several small birds at once.

The feeder should also be easy to clean and refill.

Adjustable Dome Top

The best bird feeders for small birds will have an adjustable dome top. This allows you to control how much access the birds have to the seed.

If the dome is too low, larger birds will be able to reach in and eat all the food. If the dome is too high, smaller birds may not be able to reach the food.

The best way to find the perfect height for your dome is to watch the birds at your feeder and see how they are able to reach the food. You can then adjust the height of the dome accordingly.

Small Base

Another important feature of a good bird feeder for small birds is a small base. This allows the feeder to be refilled more often, which is important because small birds eat a lot of food! A small base also makes the feeder easier to clean and maintain.

Weight-activated Perches

Weight-activated perches are a great feature for bird feeders because they help keep larger birds from eating all the food. These perches are designed to collapse when a large animal sits on them, which prevents them from being able to reach the food.

This is a great way to ensure that your small birds can get the food they need without competing with larger birds.

Shallow Design

A shallow design is another feature to look for in a bird feeder for small birds. This allows the birds to reach the food more easily and prevents larger birds from being able to perch on the feeder.

Size of the Feeding Ports

One of the most important things to consider when choosing a feeder for small birds is the size of the feeding ports. The feeding ports are the openings where the birds insert their beaks to eat the birdseed.

If the feeding ports are too large, then larger birds will be able to access the birdseed, leaving less for the smaller birds. Conversely, if the feeding ports are too small, then smaller birds may have difficulty accessing the bird seed.

As a general rule of thumb, choose a feeder with 1/2-inch diameter feeding ports for finches and other small birds.

Ease of Cleaning

It’s also important to choose a feeder that can be easily cleaned. Birdseed and bird droppings can both attract pests like mice and rats, so it’s important to clean your feeder on a regular basis.

Look for feeders that can be taken apart for easy cleaning or that have wide openings so you can reach all the nooks and crannies. Another option is to choose a clear acrylic feeder, as these can be effectively cleaned with vinegar and water.

Feeder Location

Finally, you’ll want to consider where you’ll be hanging your new birdfeeder. If you live in an area with high winds, then you’ll need to choose a feeder that can be securely attached to your home or patio.

Conversely, if you live in an area with many trees, you may want to choose a hanging feeder so that squirrels can’t easily climb up and steal the bird seed.

Bully Birds at the Feeders: How To Stop Them!

Do you have a problem with bully birds raiding your feeders? If so, you’re not alone. Many birdwatchers have to deal with this problem on a daily basis.

The most common bully birds are bluejays, crows, and grackles. These animals are often aggressive and can cause serious harm to small birds. In some cases, they may even kill the smaller birds.

There are a few things you can do to stop bully birds from raiding your feeders. One thing you can do is invest in a squirrel-proof feeder.

These special feeders have weight-activated perches that close off the access hole when a heavy animal sits on them. This will prevent squirrels and other large animals from being able to reach the food.

Another thing you can do is to provide multiple feeding stations. This will give you more bird feeding options for the smaller birds, providing places for them to eat, and help disperse the flock so that the bully birds can’t easily take over all food sources.

Finally, you can try using deterrents such as bird netting, plastic owls, or audiovisual scarers. These devices can help scare off the bully birds and give the smaller birds a chance to eat in peace.

FAQ

Why Do I Need a Bird Feeder for Smaller Birds?

Smaller birds often have difficulty competing with larger birds for food. By investing in a bird feeder specifically designed for smaller birds, you can help ensure that they get the food they need.

Which Bird Feeders AREN’T Suitable for Small Birds?

Bird feeders with large feeding ports or perches are typically not suitable for small birds. These features make it easier for larger birds to access the birdseed, leaving less for the smaller birds.

Why Do Birds Fight at the Bird Feeder?

There are a few reasons why birds might fight at the bird feeder. One reason is territory. Birds often see bird feeders as their own personal space and will defend it against intruders.

Another reason is that some birds are naturally more aggressive than others. In these cases, the bird may simply be trying to assert its dominance over the other birds.

Finally, food competition can also lead to fighting. Birds may fight over who gets to eat the most, or most delicious, food.

How Do I Encourage Small Birds to My Yard?

There are a few things you can do to encourage small birds to visit your yard:

  • provide food that they like
  • habitat that is welcoming and safe for them
  • try using birdhouses or nesting boxes to attract small birds to your property.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for the best bird feeders for small birds, then you’ll want to consider factors like size, material, and design. You’ll also want to think about where you’ll be hanging your new birdfeeder and how you can deter bully birds from raiding it. By keeping these things in mind, you can choose the perfect bird feeder for your yard.

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Sophie Herlihy

After an early start in the veterinary industry and as a conservation educator at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Florida, Sophie has since been a successful Zookeeper and Conservationist, specializing in native New Zealand species. When she isn't bird watching in native forests or crawling through the underbrush at midnight searching for rare frog species, she can be found with her husband on their sheep and beef station, far from civilization.