Breeding season is in full swing, so prepare to help those parents feed all of those hungry (and noisy) mouths!  I can tell when the parents arrive at any of the nests in my yard, you can hear those ‘feed me’ cries for probably a good 20 yards.

Continue with the seed mix from March (60% black-oil sunflower, 30% millet, 10% shelled peanuts) and nyjer seeds for the finches.  Offer no-melt suets with added fruits and nuts.  I tried some mealworm suets and found those to be VERY popular with the birds this time of year.  This can be offered in addition to dried and fresh mealworms, as these high-protein sources are important for nesting parents and young birds.  A cereal bowl on the ground near a bird bath can be a great way to offer mealworms to robins and other ground feeders, while an elevated tray or bowl feeder is popular with many other visitors.

Hummingbirds may be less active as the focus on nesting, but maintain several nectar feeders around your yard as these visitors will appreciate the quick available food source.  Make sure you change the nectar every 2-3 days to avoid bacteria and spoilage, especially as the weather warms up.  And you’ll probably want to invest in an ant moat if your feeders don’t have one to keep the 6-legged visitors at bay.  Continue to offer fresh and dried fruit and oriole nectar or jelly.