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GARDEN GATE: Episode 288 – The Return of the Grackles (March 15, 2024)

It’s that time again. The grackles have returned and many people are asking how to get rid of them and the starlings. As these birds are invasive it’s a good idea to try to deter them from visiting. Here’s a few tips that can help.  As soon as they start showing up, you want to remove sunflower seeds and peanuts. These are the most attractive to many birds. If you still want to offer these seeds, a caged feeder, or a cage to go around your feeder might be just what you need to keep them out. Upside down suet feeders can also help as grackles and starlings aren’t as agile as other birds, and have a hard time using these.  Another option is to offer niger seed from a niger specific feeder.  These feeders have small holes that grackles can’t get their beaks into. Lastly, try serving seed like safflower or our “Squirrel Free” blend. Not only is it not attractive to squirrels, but grackles and starlings don’t like it either!