Nuthatch bird feeder

How to Attract Nuthatches to your Backyard? Expert Tips!

There are many types of birds that will visit your yard. Nuthatches are a type of bird that is especially popular among homeowners because they provide such wonderful entertainment. They often come in large numbers and make it easy to observe their interesting behaviors up close.

You can attract nuthatches to your yard by providing the right kind of food for them, planting native plants, or by building structures specifically designed for these little birds.

Learning how to attract nuthatches to your backyard can be a fun and interesting hobby. They are one of the most lovable and popular of all birds, and they’re also easy to take care of and keep happy.

Best Months to Spot the Nuthatch

Nuthatches are one of the more popular birds to spot in your yard, especially during the summer. They come to your yard because this is when they migrate and can be seen as early as July or August depending on the season.

The best time to attract them to your yard is in the spring or late fall, which is around their wintering period. Nuthatches are most active during morning hours and evening hours, so it’s a good idea to feed them in these times.

Foods that Attract Nuthatches

Nuthatches are very picky eaters. Although they eat almost anything, nuthatches will only eat berries, suet, grasshoppers, spiders, grubs, worms, and eggs.

The best foods for them are seeds and suet. I find I get great results attracting nuthatches when using Sunflower Kernels.

If you’re searching for a good quality feeder for attracting nuthatches I would recommend the Gray Bunny Deluxe Hopper Feeder or the Squirrel Buster Standard Squirrel-proof Bird Feeder. You can get both these products on Amazon.

Nuthatches are highly intelligent species, so they’ll be able to recognize your scent when you approach them. Be prepared to show them your home and yard if you want nuthatches to show interest.

Some nuthatches will be more interested in your yard and home than others. But don’t be discouraged if they don’t seem to be in the same vicinity at the same time. A nuthatch doesn’t always come near its own nest or nectar.

Nuthatch feeding

Attracting Nuthatches with Crushed Crickets

Nuthatches will typically gather around your feeder. You can provide food for them by putting some crushed crickets in a small dish.

These crickets have been known to attract many species of birds to your yard. Be sure to check the labels to make sure that the crickets are certified for wild birds.

Trees and Plants that Attract Nuthatches

You’ll want to make your backyard inviting to nuthatches by planting trees and bushes that are climbing, for example. They prefer areas with plenty of vegetation and cover from the sun which is why they are attracted to landscaped yards full of trees and shrubs.

Here are some of the best trees and plants for attracting nuthatches:

  • Alder Tree
  • American Sycamore Tree
  • Blue Spruce Tree
  • Cedar Trees (White, Red)
  • Eastern White Pine Trees
  • Eucalyptus Trees
  • Acorn Tree
  • Oak Tree
  • Hickory Tree
  • Ash Tree
  • Birch Tree
  • Beech Tree
  • Birch Tree

They also like seeds from a few plants such as the sunflower, aster and black-eyed Susan.

Attracting Nuthatches with a Nest Box

Nuthatches are common birds that build their nests in natural cavities. They like to have branches and leaves around the nest, so they can camouflage themselves from predators.

If you want to attract nuthatches, place a small, box-shaped house near trees with lots of nesting material for them. For nesting material, line the inside of the box with moss, grasses, pine needles, dried leaves and twigs.

You can make your own nest box with a simple wooden box with an entrance hole at one end about 4 inches (10 cm) wide by 5 inches (13 cm) high, a storage compartment at the other end about 3 inches (8 cm) wide by 5 inches (13 cm) high, and a ledge of some kind in between to act as a perch.

If you don’t want to build your own, you can purchase this Woodlink NABB Audubon Cedar bird House that is great for attracting nesting birds. You can find it on Amazon.

A simple nest box will attract these birds to your property and provide them with shelter during their nesting season. Nuthatches like to build nests close to the ground or near tree trunks so that they can have easy access to food.

If you already have trees in your yard, try putting some pine cones in the ground. Putting these in their habitat will increase the chances of enticing them to your backyard for a closer look.

Attracting Them With Plants That Produce Nectar

Nuthatches will eat from any plant with fruit or flowers to consume nectar. This includes plants such as lilacs, hibiscus flowers, holly trees, crab apple, apple trees, cherry trees and linden trees.

When planting new gardens it’s important to consider the types of plants that produce nectar for attracting the Nuthatches.

Nuthatches like a Clean Yard

In order to attract nuthatches, you need a clean yard. Nuthatches are known for their messy habits that include pulling up all the seeds and nuts from bird feeders in your yard.

A clear and uncluttered space is what they want, so by removing any obstacles or large piles of leaves or snow can make them more likely to visit your yard.

Attract Nuthatches with a Bird Bath

These birds will often visit bird baths for drinking water and bathing. Put out a low-level bird bath with shallow water and an ample supply of food (peanut butter or suet) for them to eat while they’re bathing.

You can also place an empty flower pot or other deep container near your bird bath filled with clean water and some wet rocks for the nuthatch to perch on while they drink. I would recommend purchasing a high-quality birdbath like this one on Amazon.

Frequently Asked Questions

What seed do nuthatches like?

Nuthatches are the type of bird that will eat almost anything, but they especially love sunflower seeds. They also like peanut and pine nuts.

Do nuthatches feed on the ground?

Nuthatches are small birds that feed on the ground, primarily in winter. They eat insects and other invertebrates, including seeds and berries. In warmer months they can be found on trees feeding from leaves, nuts, fruit or bark.

Do nuthatches eat black sunflower seeds?

Nuthatches are a type of bird that love to eat black oil sunflower seeds. They usually eat these types of seeds in the winter, when other food sources are scarce.

Do nuthatches hide seeds?

The nuthatch has a distinctive habit of storing seeds during the summer months by burying them in bark crevices or wedging them into branches before returning to find them again when they need more food. 

Do nuthatches climb trees?

Nuthatches are known for climbing trees. They have long, curved claws that help them cling to tree bark and the small spaces between branches. The tails of nuthatches can be used as a counterbalance while they’re clinging to a branch or trunk.