Crows in yard

How To Attract Crows To Your Backyard: Expert Tips!

Crows are a smart and interesting bird. They are often considered to be pests because they can be loud, messy, and territorial. However, crows have a reputation for being intelligent problem solvers which means you may not want to bother them. 

Crows are a common sight in many backyards, and it’s not uncommon to see them perching on the branches of trees or hopping along the ground. They are often seen eating from dog food bowls or other human-provided sources of food, but they don’t typically visit feeders.

However, if you want to attract crows to your yard for entertainment purposes, there are some ways that you can do so.

Why do you want to attract crows to your backyard?

There are several reasons you might want to attract crows to your yard. First, crows are excellent predators, and they typically go after other birds. The black crows in your backyard are much more likely to get into your yard if you add an interesting structure or some food.

Second, if you have a lot of crows in your yard, they can reduce bird nesting by robbing nest sites. Having a bunch of crows can lower the crow population, but it also means less competition for nesting sites.

This may be just what you need if you want to add a second bird family. Third, a small population of crows can help you deal with avian disease.

Video by John Barnard from Pexels

What to feed them to attract them to your backyard?

Feed crows tasty, easy-to-obtain foods that are easily accessible. It’s best to feed the crows at night when they are most likely to visit your backyard. The easiest way to attract crows to your backyard is to get a feeding station and feed them scraps and other tasty foods, such as insects, grubs, fruit, nuts, and seeds.

Birdseed and cat food have a long history of attracting birds to feeders. Another tasty option is peanuts that the birds can eat when it’s not time for the crows to be fed at night.

Crows’ Favorite Food Plants:

  • Cherries
  • Elderberries
  • Grapes
  • Mulberries
  • Apples
  • Pears

Provide places where they can roost and perch.

Crows like to hang out in a tree, so you’ll want to avoid tall, straight trees as they don’t like to hang out too far away. Many crows in the suburbs are drawn to these tall, spiky trees to roost, so if they are allowed to grow, they’ll likely stay close.

Feeders are important to attracting crows, so you’ll want to find a way to attract them to them so you can feed them. You can set up feeders in areas where the crows will feel comfortable, like overhangs and overgrown shrubs. You’ll also want to offer fresh, local food.

Provide cover to the crows, like overgrown shrubs, so they won’t be on display. You can set up nesting boxes in your yard so the crows will feel safe nesting in them and bring their young up to protect them. 

1. Provide places for them to roost, such as tree hollows, chimney tops, utility boxes, and tree limbs. Crows love hanging out at night.

2. Provide adequate perches, so they can get the air and sun, such as hanging baskets, power lines, walls ornamental bird feeders, on the ground beneath feeders.

Attracting crows with water

Water is a critical element for all life on Earth. Crows are no exception to this rule. When it comes to feeding crows, you can provide them with water by placing a shallow container or a bird bath near trees, bushes, or buildings where they like to perch.

You can also put out bread crumbs and raw corn for them to eat. This will ensure that they get the necessary nutrients and liquids that they need in order to survive in our world today!

Another way to attract them is by providing them with a birdbath. They are commonly seen around birdbaths for drinking and bathing, but if they can’t find any water they will not come.

The crow’s natural instinct is to drink from the nearest source of water, so it makes sense that there would be more crows in an area with more ponds or lakes. 

Crow in birdbath
Image by Capri23auto from Pixabay

What type of habitat to provide for them to attract them?

Though they spend the majority of their time soaring high in the sky, they are clever and intelligent creatures, and if you provide the right kind of habitat, you can get them to come and hang out in your backyard.

Crows are attracted to tall trees, grassy areas, gardens, cactus, garbage, compost piles, old birdbaths, metal barbecue grills and plenty of trees to roost in. Crows also use bird baths, bird feeders, and perches for nesting sites and roosting.

If you see crows nesting in your yard, provide them with a safe place to roost by putting up nesting boxes that are approximately 18 inches wide by 24 inches deep with an entrance hole about 4-6 inches wide (open fronted style box) and making sure it is high enough off the ground, so predators cannot reach inside.

Sprinkle gravel or a mixture of sand and corn meal in an area.

I found out about this technique from a bird biologist, and I wanted to try it out for myself. I sprinkled gravel or a mixture of sand and corn meal in the area where I want crows to congregate.

They like foraging on these surfaces, and it makes it easier for them to spot food left out by humans. It took time before they started showing up but after a few weeks they had made themselves at home!

Leave reflective objects around your yard.

One way to attract crows, which will spark their curiosity, is by leaving shiny objects around your yard. Shiny reflective objects such as aluminum foil, silverware, coins, keys, metal wire, jewelry, and mirrors or other items that reflect light, and will often catch their attention, and are a surefire way to bring the pesky birds in.

You can also try creating a trap with some corn kernels for bait, and be sure to spread it around so that the crows have easy access.

Loose coins
Image by Alehandra13 from Pixabay

Hang an old pie plate from a tree branch

One way to attract some Crows is by hanging an old pie plate from a tree branch near water, with some pebbles or small pieces of bread inside as bait. This can be very helpful if you are trying to attract these birds easily to your home or a certain place.

The problem is that people may not know what type of bird they are attracting and whether it will have any negative consequences for them. It’s best to just use this method sparingly.

Attract them with a variety of sounds

The noise created by humans can attract crows to your property, but you may also want to try using a call to lure them closer. Crows also communicate with each other through vocalizations and gestures. Crows have many calls, so there is no one sound that will work for every crow. Instead, you should record a variety of sounds on your phone.

Crow Calls: There are many types of crow calls you can use to attract crows to your property or backyard. Some examples include imitating a lost baby crow call, the territorial song of a male crow.

When you learn how to mimic a crow’s call, they will feel comfortable enough with your presence that they’ll come over and perch on nearby branches just waiting for a handout of corn kernels or peanuts.

Crow calling
Photo by Tim Mossholder from Pexels

Attract crows by eliminating noise

They can be attracted to your yard with food and will stay around if the area is quiet enough for them. Crows are easily spooked by noises and will not visit areas that will bother them. Remove noise sources like wind chime bells, rattling, clanging metallic sounds to keep your yard appealing to them.

Wind chime
Image by Phúc Mã from Pixabay

Attract them to your yard with a compost bin.

Crows happen to be scavengers and foragers, meaning they will eat just about anything! This is great news if you have a compost bin set up in your yard. Many people don’t know that crows can actually be attracted to yards with a well-maintained compost bin.

Compost bins provide food scraps such as fruit, veggies, eggshells and other items which can give the crows all of their dietary needs.

Compost bin
Photo by Eva Elijas from Pexels

Attracting them to your yard is out of the question with dogs and cats.

Crows are often attracted to a particular type of environment such as a natural setting or abandoned building where they can nest undisturbed. It would be out of the question to attract crows to your yard if you dogs running around.

Crows are naturally scared of dogs and cats, so they will be hesitant to visit your yard if your pets are running freely. This is because they are too afraid of them to come close enough for food.

So if you want a crow-free backyard, make sure that all of your animals are inside or at least far away from the area.

Dog in yard
Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels


Crows have adapted well to urban environments, and like the suburban house sparrow, they are flourishing. Providing them with food, water, and shelter along with respecting the territoriality of crows is the best course of action. Given the need for food and shelter, a good diet will be critical to their success.


  • 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, and embark on a rewarding journey in the world of birds.