"I hope you love birds too. It is economical. It saves going to heaven."
Emily Dickinson

Monday, November 10, 2014

Serve millet to attract ground feeders

White-crowned sparrow   Photo by J.J. Meyer

Millet eaters have moved back to Southern California for the winter.  If you're not offering millet, you may miss out on some wonderful visitors, such as white-crowned sparrows.

White millet is an easy-to-open, small round seed packed with carbohydrates. It's the preferred seed for many ground-feeding birds, including juncos, doves, quail, towhees and native sparrows.  Millet often comes in wild bird seed mixes. When placed in a feeder, perching birds tend to kick it to the ground while searching for their preferred seed: black oil sunflower. But the ground-feeders are happy to clean it up.

You can purchase bags of millet at nature and pet stores to use in a tray feeder or spread on the ground. Choose white proso millet over the red or golden millet.  But don't confuse white millet with spray millet, which is seed still on the stalk generally sold for caged birds.

Happy Birding!

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