How to Feed Your Backyard Birds Without Going Broke

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Whether you’re an avid bird watcher who wants to attract various species of birds or simply someone who enjoys seeing beautiful birds visiting your garden, there are many ways to get wild birds to make their homes in your backyard! Feeding them is one of the best techniques to attract birds but this can be a very expensive habit. So how do you do it? How do you feed backyard birds without spending a fortune? Consider these tips:

Check Out Your Kitchen

You don’t need to buy fancy bird food to feed wild birds. Check what you have in your kitchen. Chances are, there are many foodstuffs in the pantry that make for great bird food. Stale bread and crackers, for example, are excellent bird food. So are fruits like oranges. Beef fat, unsalted peanuts, and oatmeal are also good options.

Add a Birdbath

Birds love the water. They bathe in it, drink from it, and love hanging around in it — so installing one right in your garden will attract a lot of birds. Again, the key here is to spend less money so forget about the fancy birdbaths you see in the hardware store. You can create your own birdbath from stuff you already have at home like ceramic bowls, etc. You can check online tutorials on how you can create your very own birdbath. If you prefer store-bought ones, there are many affordable birdbaths to choose from your local hardware store!

Bacon Drippings

Love bacon? Birds also happen to love bacon! So make sure you save all your bacon drippings because you could use it to feed the birds too! Just add several cubes of stale bread directly on the bacon dripping and leave the bread on your bird feeder. Watch as birds munch on this savory treat!


If you have leftover popcorn stashed away somewhere in your pantry, you can also use it to feed your backyard birds. Of course, birds will also nosh on un-popped popcorns but we suggest going for the microwaved popcorn! Again, just leave the right amount of popcorn in your bird feeder and wild birds are bound to come right out to eat.

Peanut Butter

Did you know that woodpeckers love peanut butter? That’s right, spread peanut butter on tree branches and the woodpeckers will come right out to lick it! If you’re not keen on the idea of spreading peanut butter on trees, you could also spread it all over stale bread and just leave it at a raised platform near the birds.

Grains and Nuts

Birds go loco for nuts like pecans, pistachios, almonds, hickory, walnuts, and grains like oatmeal and cereal. Nuts and grains are one of the healthiest bird foods there are, and they make a great energy source for your feathered friends. You can either get rid of the nutshells using a nutcracker or hand-chop the nuts — shells and all.

Make Fido share his food with the birds. Woodpeckers, in particular, love cat food and other birds do too! Pet foods contain carbohydrates and protein from corn, rice, and whole grains plus vegetable so they are excellent source of nutrition for wild birds. You can save more money if you buy pet food in bulk and save several portions for the birds!