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Home Best Backyard Bird-Feeding Practices Bird Safety Banning Bird Feeding Reduce Cowbird, Starling, and House Sparrow Visits
Reduce Cowbird, Starling, and House Sparrow Visits

PROJECT WILDBIRD was a three-year, $1 million study funded by the Wild Bird Feeding Industry Research Foundation that examined bird seed and bird feeder preferences in the U.S. and Canada.  The study was hosted at Millikin University, and Dr. David J. Horn served as the Principal Investigator.  The study found that the preferred seed of Brown-headed Cowbird and House Sparrow was white proso millet.  Feeder type is also an important consideration with larger-bodied species, such as Brown-headed Cowbird and European Starling, with larger birds most abundant at platform feeders.  Thus, to reduce visitation by unwanted species, select bird seed and bird feeder combinations that attract desirable species, and the least number of undesirable species, such as black-oil sunflower, Nyjer®, and sunflower hearts in tube or Nyjer® feeders. 


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