I’ve received this question from Liz.  I don’t know the answer for certain. Can anyone help?

I put out loads of food for birds but it goes mouldy in the containers.  Although I live in the city and have a small garden, i have hedges and shrubs to provide cover but simply cannot attract birds.  Have you any idea why?

 I  replied –

First – He glad you got in touch. 

You have a garden with  hedges and shrubs but cannot attract birds.  Strange.

Could you let me know what food do you put out and if you see birds around your area.  Are they in the next garden?

It could be that there is a predator about, say a cat or a sparrowhawk and the birds know this. 

Different birds eat different food. Maybe there aren’t the type of bird about that would eat the food you put out (but this isn’t likely)

I would take the feeders in and  take all the mouldy food out.  then soak the feeders in water, say in an old bucket, to get rid of any bits of  mouldy food.  Dry the feeders out .  Let me know what type of bird food you use. 

I will see if I can think of any other reason. Look forward to hearing from you. Trisha at Bird Table News


I need help here.  The weather is freezing, there is bird food about but the birds aren’t coming for it.  I have just been writing how important it is to put bird food out for birds – life is strange sometimes.


  1. liz

    I put out mealworms, thistle seeds, peanuts and ground peanuts. The meal worms do disappear overnight but a) im not sure if its birds eacting them and b) they are really expensive. There aren’t any cats nearby, but I do have seagulls – Im not sure if they are a predator. There are alots of smaller birds in neighbours trees but they just never seem to come here.

  2. Trish Post author

    Thanks for the information. I don’t understand it. Maybe you could change the bird food you put out. I will put together some notes on bird food that a lot of different types of birds like

    So you have a lot of different birds nearby. Do you know what type of bird they are? Are they sparrows, blackbirds, robins. Can you tell?

    Where do you get your bird food from? do they sell different types of bird food?

    As well as bird food I put out cut up cheese, cut up apple, bread soaked in water, old cake. You could try putting out kitchen scraps and see if birds come to your garden

    Seagulls aren’t predators, but they can eat a lot of bird food.

    Will be in touch about different bird food when I have put some info together. Cheers. Trisha.
    PS thanks for caring about these wild birds. x

  3. Trish Post author

    Hi Liz, I did send you a reply about different bird food, but I cannot find it anywhere! Did you receive my reply?

    Am putting the information on again – don’t know what has gone wrong

    One of the feed I use is Guardman no mess seed mix and I buy a large bag, but they do sell smaller bags.

    Why not stop putting out mealworms, thistle seeds, peanuts and ground peanuts.

    Try fatballs, cut up cheese and apple, a good mixed bird food, sunflower seeds always go down well in winter. Buy a small bag of robin and songbird mix and see if that attracts any smaller birds.

    You could buy a small bag of ground feed bird food – this attracts the soft bill birds such as blackbirds and thrushes.

    Let me know how you come on. Please also let me know if you did receive my earlier notes that I sent


  4. Gary

    I am having the same problem. The birds aren’t eating the bird seed. Do you think that the seed is genetically modified? I read somewhere that chickens won’t eat GM chicken feed. The animals must know that GM foods are not safe.

  5. Trish Post author

    Hi, I haven’t heard of the bird seed being genetically modified but that doesn’t mean it isn’t.

    Have birds just stopped coming to your bird table or are you trying to attract them for the first time.

    Have you just recently changed your bird food that you put out?

    Someone suggested that in winter birds leave gardens that are open to the elements and go for sheltered gardens. This is not true in my garden, because it is very open to the elements but I still get lots of birds.

    Mmmm. If some of our food is genetically modified then could seed grown and used as bird food be genetically modified. I don’t know, but it is an interesting question.


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