Last Updated on December 13, 2021 by Guillermina
Here is a blue jay-proof bird feeder guide for those who are hoping to attract certain kinds of songbirds to their birdwatching set-up!
Blue jays are majestic creatures that can be considered bullies among suburban wild birds. Dominant, territorial, and noisy, the blue jay can take over your feeder to the dismay of other hungry birds. With a few easy adjustments to your bird feeder, you can make space for everyone in your home.
Are you hoping to learn how to keep blue jay away from bird feeders? Read on to find out more and save some feed for smaller flying friends!
Why Would You Prevent Blue Jays From Your Feeder?
Blue jays are one of the most notorious “bully birds”. Bully birds are those that are constantly at feeders, often driving away other birds who would like to feed.
Blue jays fit the bill due to several factors.
First, they are a medium-sized wild bird that dominates other garden birds in size. They also have strong claws and a sharp beak that make them even more intimidating.
Second, they are able to make noises that startle other birds. Jays are known for their noise and rowdiness.
Third, they are naturally aggressive and territorial. They chase away other birds from their territory and can be very physical about it. They have the reputation of raiding enemy bird nests in an effort to secure their kingdom, but this is actually a rare occurrence.
If the goal of your feeder was to attract a beautiful array of birds and provide good nutrition, bully birds can prevent that from happening. If you’ve noticed an increase in bully birds in your backyard or feeder, it may be time to take action. A blue jay-proof bird feeder will get you on the right track.
What Do Blue Jays Like?
To understand how to prevent blue jays from taking over your feeder, you should consider why they are coming over in the first place. We also have a guide on attracting blue jays, which is a good start to know how to prevent them!
The blue jay is a massive fan of this seed in its black oil and striped variety. It’s also like this seed was made for them – they have special claws and beaks that can break through the hard shell quickly and easily! While other smaller birds will find it hard to eat sunflower seeds, blue jays will eat the seeds like a piece of cake.
Blue jays tend to need to perch to gorge away at the feast in front of them. This is also due to their weight and size. Where smaller birds can get away with hanging out on small perches or hanging upside down while feeding, blue jays cannot do this! Hopper styles are typical blue jay feeders.
Another thing that blue jays love is a good bath. They not only take a splash in the water, but they drink from the bath as well. They seem to appreciate this convenience more than other birds.
This is especially true if you installed a heated birdbath in the winter, which is very convenient and comfortable for them!
Reas more about Do Birds Eat Almonds?
How to Keep Unwanted Birds Away From Your Feeder
Now that you know what blue jays love, it’s time to use that knowledge against them! Here are some methods that you could use to prevent them from dominating your bird feeder.
Use Anti-bully Bird Technology
There are already quite a few gadgets that discourage bully birds and even squirrels from taking your food. Some examples are cage feeders that are perfect for tiny beaks but tougher for bigger beaks to poke through. Baffles that typically prevent squirrels could discourage bigger birds like blue jays from hanging out, too.
You may also want to explore weight-activated perches that will unbalance big animals attempting to access your feeder.
Avoid Using Feeders With Perches
Just like using cage feeders, baffles, and weight-activated perches, having little to no perch space works, too! Small birds are happy to hang out on dainty little perches, hang from the edge of a plate or bowl, or even cling onto mesh wiring. Bully birds are too big and heavy for that kind of balancing act.
Blue jays and other bully birds like quickly accessible feeders like hopper and tray types, so make sure to avoid these designs if you’re fed up with dealing with them. Clean up the area regularly to pick up spilled feed and avoid aggressive ground feeders.
Change Your Bird Feed Menu
Bully birds have a tendency to clean out the feeder before other birds can get to the nutritious goodness you are trying to offer. It would be ideal for switching out their favorites with items not typically on their menu – this includes nyjer or thistle seed, millet, sorghum, and other small grains and seeds.
You can purchase dedicated mixes from your local bird feed shops or online. They will offer a good mix specially curated for certain birds to ensure you are attracting the kind of bird you were hoping for to your backyard!
Set Aside Dedicated Blue Jay Feeders
If blue jays can’t help but come over to your place, it might be a good idea to set up a feeder that is especially for them. This way, they won’t disrupt the other birds that have come to your feeder. To accomplish this, your.
You need to install an appropriate feeder and stock it with blue jay favorites. You need to make sure it’s a reasonable distance away from your original feeder. Your original feeder can capitalize on other things smaller birds like, such as a tube feeder filled with tiny grain and seed.
Setting up a blue jay-proof bird feeder takes some work but is an effort well worth it. Blue jays can be a bit of a nuisance for people who want to make havens for all kinds of birds. However, there are steps you can take to either keep them off your yard or help other birds get their share of feed. There’s a win-win situation for everyone here!
Have you ever dealt with bully birds at your feeder set-up? What did you do to get rid of them? Let us know in the comments below!