A ring-necked pheasant foraging around crops.

17 Common Birds That Eat Crops (With Photos, ID & Info!)

Some birds are natural enemies of crops. Birds can be one of the most difficult pests for a gardener to deal with, especially if they like eating your plants! In this article, we will explore 17 common birds that eat crops and the best ways to keep them away from your garden. 

Common Birds That Eat Crops

Common Blackbird

A common blackbird foraging.
Image by gb59098 from Pixabay

The common blackbird is a passerine bird that is found in many parts of the world. They are located in the central and eastern parts of North America. Their range extends into southern Canada, and they can also be found in parts of Mexico.

They live in a variety of habitats, including open fields, forests, and wetlands. They eat a large variety of foods, including worms, fruits, and seeds. However, they are also known to eat crops, which can make them pests for farmers.

Red-winged Blackbird

A Red-winged blackbird eating seeds.
Image by JudaM from Pixabay

Red-winged blackbirds are common in North America, where they can be found in wet meadows, marshes, prairies, and along the edges of streams and rivers. These birds are also well known for their habit of feeding on crops, making them a nuisance to farmers.

Red-winged blackbirds range from southern Canada to northern Mexico and Central America. They live in open habitats with tall grasses or reeds, as well as in woods near water. These birds eat mostly insects, but also seeds, fruit, and snails.

Related Post: 26 Birds That Flock Together (With Photos, ID & Info!)

American Crow

An American Crow perched on a tree.
Photo by Pixabay: https://www.pexels.com/photo/black-crow-bird-59850/

The American Crow is a common sight across most of the United States, where it ranges from the Arctic Circle to the Gulf of Mexico. The crow’s habitat includes open areas such as fields, meadows, and marshes, as well as areas near forests and urban areas.

The crow’s diet consists mostly of insects, but it will also eat small mammals, eggs, and fruits. American Crows sometimes damage crops, but they also play an important role in ecosystems by helping to control populations of pests.

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Mourning Dove

mourning dove perched on a rooftop.
Image by GeorgiaLens from Pixabay

The Mourning Dove is a medium-sized bird that is found in open areas across North America. They are usually seen perched on tree branches or utility wires, and they can also be seen walking on the ground.

Mourning Doves eat mostly seeds, but they will also eat insects and fruits. In North America, they are known to eat seeds of corn, grains and wheat left in fields after harvesting and have been known to cause damage to crops.

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House Finch

A house finch perched on a branch.
Image by Jack Bulmer from Pixabay

The house finch is a small North American songbird. It ranges from southern Canada to northern Mexico and is found in most of the United States. The house finch is common in cities and suburbs, where it often feeds on spilled birdseed or bread crusts.

These birds also eat insects, berries, and other fruits. House Finches can be a nuisance to farmers because they eat crops, but they also help to control pests.

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Common Magpie

A Common Magpie foraging on the grass.
Photo by David Iannace on Unsplash

The Common Magpie is a black and white bird that is found in Western North America, Eurasia and parts of North Africa. They are a member of the crow family and are the most common magpie in the world. Magpies typically live in open woodland, but can also be found in parks, gardens and farmland.

They eat a variety of things, but prefer to eat insects, earthworms, frogs and other small animals. However, they will also eat seeds, fruit and crops if they are available.

Related Post: How to Attract Magpies to your Garden? (In 4 Easy Steps!)

Ring-necked Pheasant

A Ring-necked Pheasant foraging on the ground.
Image by Jim Black from Pixabay

Ringed necked pheasants are a common bird found in the United States. They thrive in open habitats like fields and meadows, but can also be found in woodlands and forests. These birds are omnivorous, eating insects, seeds, fruits, and other plant material.

In agricultural areas, they often feed on newly planted crops or seedlings, damaging farmers’ crops. Ringed necked pheasants can be hunted during certain times of the year, making them a popular game bird.

Wood Pigeon

A Wood Pigeon perched on a fence.
Image by Daniel Borker from Pixabay

The wood pigeon is a common sight in the UK and can be found in a variety of habitats across the country. They are particularly fond of woodlands and parks, but can also be found in gardens, farmland and other rural areas.

Wood pigeons eat a range of things, but prefer seeds, fruits and insects. They have also been known to eat crops, which can cause problems for farmers.

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Common Rook

A common rook foraging on the ground.
Image by Artur Pawlak from Pixabay

Common rooks are a member of the corvid family, which also includes crows and jays. They are found in open habitats such as farmland, parks, and gardens.

Rooks are omnivorous and eat a variety of things, including insects, seeds, fruit, and small animals. They have also been known to eat crops such as maize and sunflowers.

Related Post: Birds That Look Like Crows But Aren’t

House Sparrow

House Sparrows are a common sight in North America, but they are not native to the continent. These birds were introduced in the mid-19th century, and they have since become widespread. House Sparrows inhabit a variety of habitats, including urban areas, agricultural land and forests.

They eat a variety of foods, including seeds, insects and fruits. While they are not considered a pest species, House Sparrows can occasionally damage crops.

Related Post: How to Attract Sparrows to your Backyard? (Like A Pro)

European Starling

A European Starling perched on a rooftop.
Photo by John Yunker on Unsplash

European Starlings are common in North America. They are cavity nesters, and will take over abandoned woodpecker holes, nest boxes, or other man-made structures.

European Starlings eat mostly insects during the breeding season but will also consume fruit and seeds. In winter, they switch to a diet of mostly berries and grains. European Starlings can be a nuisance to farmers as they often eat crops.

Related Post: How To Attract European Starlings To Your Yard Fast?

Song Thrush

The Song Thrush is a passerine bird that is found in Europe, the Middle East, and parts of Asia. The Song Thrush has a range of 1,200 to 2,000 kilometers and can be found in open woodlands, gardens, parks and farmland.

The Song Thrush diet consists of insects, earthworms, berries and fruit. The Song Thrush has also been known to eat crops such as corn and wheat.

Related Post: How to Attract Thrushes to your Garden? (Expert Tips!)

Tufted Titmouse

A Tufted Titmouse perched on a tree branch.
Image by Mohan Nannapaneni from Pixabay

The tufted titmouse (Baeolophus bicolor) is a small North American bird. They are usually between 4 and 5 inches in length and have a wingspan of about 8 inches. Tufted titmice are gray with a white belly and a distinctive crest white feathers on their head.

They live in deciduous forests, where they eat insects, spiders, fruit, and seeds. Tufted titmices sometimes visit gardens and yards to feed on the seeds in bird feeders or eat the fruits of trees and shrubs. They have also been known to eat crops such as corn, wheat, and soybeans.

Related Post: How to Attract Tufted Titmouse to my Yard? (Explained)

Cedar Waxwing

A Cedar Waxwing perched on a tree.
Image by Jack Bulmer from Pixabay

The cedar waxwing is a medium-sized North American passerine bird. It is a member of the Bombycillidae, or waxwing family. The cedar waxwing is found in open woodlands and near water.

Its habitat includes both deciduous and coniferous forests. The cedar waxwing’s diet consists of fruits, insects, and nectar. Cedar waxwings are known to eat crops, such as cherries and apples.

Related Post: How to Attract Cedar Waxwings to your Yard (Experts Tips)

Common Grackle

A Common Grackle perched on a tree.

The Common Grackle is a large black bird that ranges throughout much of North America. They can be found in open areas near water, such as marshes, lakes and rivers, as well as in urban and suburban environments.

The diet of the Common Grackle consists mostly of insects, but they will also consume seeds, grains and fruit. One interesting fact about these birds is that they are known to target crops, particularly corn. While they are not considered to be a major pest, their feeding can cause some damage to crops.

Gray Catbird

Gray Catbirds are common in the eastern United States, but their range extends west to the Great Plains and south to Mexico. They inhabit a variety of habitats, from dense forest to open fields, but they are most commonly found in edges between habitats.

Their diet consists mostly of insects, but they also eat fruit and seeds. They are known to target crops, such as corn and sunflowers, for food.

Pileated Woodpecker

A Pileated Woodpecker perched on a tree.
Image by Jack Bulmer from Pixabay

The Pileated Woodpecker is a large woodpecker that can be found in parts of the United States, Canada and Mexico. They live in forested areas and eat a variety of things, including insects, nuts, fruits and sap. They have also been known to eat crops, such as corn and sunflowers.

Pileated woodpeckers use their long beaks to extract insects from trees and their strong bills to pry open hard nuts. They also use their powerful wings to fly from tree to tree.

Related Post: How to Attract Pileated Woodpeckers to your Yard (Fast)

What are the damages caused by birds?

Birds can cause a variety of damages, both to people and to property. Some birds, like crows and vultures, can be carriers of disease. They can also damage crops or contaminate food supplies with their droppings. Birds can also cause physical damage by hitting windows or other structures, or by nesting in inappropriate places like chimneys or air vents.

How to control birds in the farm?

Farmers have been dealing with bird problems for years. The best way to control the birds is to understand their behavior and how they live. There are several effective ways to deal with these pests, but each method depends on the type of bird and the situation.

One common way to deal with birds is through exclusion tactics. This includes using netting or wire mesh to keep them out of an area, or installing physical barriers like spikes on ledges or roofs.

Hawks can also be employed as a natural form of pest control by scaring away other birds. However, this method is only effective if there are enough hawks in the area to make a difference.

Another approach is to use bird deterrents like loud noises, flashing lights, or predator models. These usually work by scaring the birds away or confusing them so they don’t stay in the area.

Beneficial birds in agriculture

Birds can provide significant benefits to farmers and ranchers. Some birds, such as the European starling, can be serious pests. However, many other birds are important predators of insects and other pests, or they help to spread seeds and pollen. In addition, birds can provide emotional support to people working on the farm.

One of the most important groups of beneficial birds is the raptors, or birds of prey. Hawks, eagles, falcons, and owls prey on small animals such as rodents and snakes. They also eat large numbers of insects, including agricultural pests. Many raptors are protected by law, so it is important to create habitat for them near farmland.

Another group of helpful birds is the perching birds. These include songbirds such as chickadees and bluebirds as well as woodpeckers. One of the most beneficial birds for agriculture is the American goldfinch. These small birds are known for their appetite for insects, especially aphids.

They also eat seeds, making them a valuable asset in the garden. Goldfinches can be attracted to a property by providing them with a bird feeder filled with thistle or sunflower seeds.

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  • Vince S

    Meet Vince, the passionate founder of Learn Bird Watching, boasting 30 years of birding experience. With an unwavering mission to empower fellow bird enthusiasts, Vince shares invaluable wisdom and guidance. Whether you're a budding birder or a seasoned avian aficionado, his wealth of knowledge is at your service. Reach out for expert insights and support at admin@learnbirdwatching.com, and embark on a rewarding journey in the world of birds.