At some point I noticed that I never saw any American Robins at my bird feeders. I regularly saw finches, titmice, cardinals, and even doves, but I never saw one of the most common song birds in North America. So then, do robins eat at bird feeders?
American Robins will only eat at bird feeders if you are offering food that they like. Robins do not typically eat bird seed, but do occasionally.
What does the American Robin eat?
The American Robin is an omnivorous bird and eats a wide variety of food in its natural environment. Here are several common things you may see a robin eating in the wild:
- Earthworms, grubs, and caterpillars
- Small fruits
- And the occasional seeds
Less commonly robins may be seen eating:
- Small snakes
- Small lizards
- Small fish
How to attract robins to a bird feeder
If you want to attract robins to your bird feeder you can offer them things like pieces of apple, berries, and dried meal worms. This article on what to feed birds from the kitchen may give you some other ideas. I recommend using a ground feeder, this fly through ground feeder on Amazon is perfect for feeding robins. They are used to finding food such as earthworms and insects on or near the ground so a nice ground feeder is ideal.
American Robins may occasionally check out your seed feeders but in general do not eat bird seed and won’t typically be frequent seed feeder visitors.
Will robins nest in a birdhouse?
Robins prefer to make their nests on ledges like the image above. Robin’s don’t like to live in closed in spaces like birdhouses, so they will not usually nest in them. If you want robins to nest in your yard then there are many ways to build your own robin’s nesting ledge, or you can buy a pre-made robin’s nesting shelf on Amazon. Be sure you hang it underneath an overhang if you’re mounting it to your house to protect the nest from the rain.
Even though robins aren’t very common around feeders they are still one of my favorite backyard birds. I frequently see them poking in the ground for worms in my yard and it’s always a treat to come across a robin’s nest.
We don’t typically associate them with eating seeds, but as you can see form the video below they do from time to time.