Monday, May 16, 2011

The Rose Breasted Grosbeaks Love to Eat....




Since Mr. Fix-it is home all the time he has been enjoying the birds along with me. One sunny morning he asked, "What type of birds are these??"


We were both excited to see THREE pairs of rose breasted grosbeaks feeding at a bird feeder on the back deck. All pictures were taken through my windows because these birds are skittish.


Safflower seeds are a type of seed all the other birds refuse to eat unless it is their only choice. I was surprised to see the grosbeaks having a ball. They had the feeder all to themselves.


We had a special treat later that evening when the grosbeaks came back for dinner. My daughter  Christine was here and I kept telling her and the Jimster to look look! They had never seen these birds before.


The females are the brown birds and the males are, of course, the flashy birds with the red breasts. They make a lovely whistling sound in the garden. These birds do a good job of eating insects but do visit bird feeders as you can see. I know they like black oil sunflower seeds but it sure seems to me they love the safflower seeds....

in the garden....

Words and Photos Property of In the Garden Blog Team, In the Garden


  1. These are lovely birds, Tina. Funny, but I never paid much attention to birds until I started gardening. Now I get my bird book out whenever I spot one I can't identify...after I've gotten my camera out, that is:)

    Looking at your blooms on your last post, I can see why you're so busy right now, too. It's a great time to enjoy the garden!

  2. How fun to be able to enjoy these pretty birds from your window. :)

  3. I think they must like sunflower hearts too, because I only had them when one of my feeders had a mix with hearts included.

    They are such a beautiful bird. :)

  4. Three pair?? wow!! That is really fun. I have seen Rosebreasted Grosbeaks once in Virginia, fun to see an out of the ordinary bird every so often....but to see three!!! You won the prize.

  5. Good morning all! It's rainy and cold here-I love it.

    Rose, Welcome back from Cancun and yes, a most wonderful time of the year. Love all the birds-now those pesky chipmunks...

    Racquel, It was nice to see them close up. My camera did some magnifying on them. Thanks goodness but they were a real treat to see in person.

    Nancy, Those birds can be picky for sure. I'm glad they like these seeds as the other birds don't. Chipmunks do though-grrr on the chipmunks.

  6. Janet, We've occasionally seen them here usually on their migration routes. They moved off a day or so ago I think as I haven't seen them recently. But if you haven't tried the safflower try it and I've found they like the platform type feeder even though it swings.

  7. I'm amazed that you can get birds to sit for a photo. Maybe you're not scrambling to find the camera, check to see if the memory card is in it, changing dead batteries, and trying to focus on the little critters. I'm working on that. Just not as quick as you. Again, you've inspired me to get my act together with my camera.

  8. Those beautiful birds look like they are conversing with each other. I wonder what the dialog is.

  9. We catch these beauties during migration as well. We had the Blue Grosbeak drop by this spring but no blog quality pics taken by me, sigh.

    Send us rain, we need it!

  10. They are such a pretty bird and as Janet put it, you won the prize. I also have only seen 1 pair at a time.

    Raining here also and I am really sick and tired of it. It has been just like summer before last and we seldom have spring and summers like this. I sure hope it changes soon or I may end up with the darn ole blight like summer before last.
    Skeeter, if it worked that way, I sure would send it down to you. At least half of it.

  11. Geos, Thanks!

    Wendy, I make it a point to keep the camera handy and set to go. Finding it is always my issue though. I think a florescent orange tag would help:)

    Malay, I hope they are saying, "Yum yum! We love this lady who feeds us such good stuff and will endeavor to eat a bunch of bugs for her!":)

    Skeeter, I've never seen the blue grosbeak. Must check them out soon. I bet they are beauties too.

    Mom, I sure enjoyed them here. They should be heading your way. Rainy here too and there is still some flooding. It is dreary but soon we'll be begging for rain so I tend to love it. Sorry. Hopefully it warms up soon and the sun comes out for you. I hear by the end of the week.

  12. The rose breasted grosbeaks used to migrate through here every spring for years. But now sadly it has been years since they have been here. Loved seeing yours. Still won't let me pick your post but still trying.

  13. We don't have those around here. Nice photos!

  14. So exciting, Tina! I've had them visit, as a pair, once in the past (where I was able to capture photos). I haven't seen them since...and that was probably 2 years ago.
    I have safflower seed in a feeder closest to my screened in porch, right outside my kitchen window. I keep that specific seed in that location because it's the only one the squirrels won't touch. Before I added it, there were sunflower seeds in it, and the squirrels went nuts in that location...climbing all over the screens and even chewing a hole in the screen itself. So the safflower has worked well there. I do get cardinals and carolina wrens at that feeder, but it is the very last feeder to become empty. We can fill up the other feeders several times before the safflower feeder needs refilling, so yes, I believe it is the birds' least-favorite seed. I think they like it as an 'option', in addition to the other delicacies they get to dine on;-) PS I received YOUR seeds and was thrilled! Thank you so much; I'm looking forward to planting them. I am so glad you love the tote bag;-)

  15. Rose-breasted Grosbeaks are so beautiful. We see them occasionally on their way up north.

  16. I've never had these visit my garden either Tina. What a treat. Nice to know they like safflower seeds ~ I never usually buy those to feed but if I ever see a Grosbeak, I'm running out to get some!
    Hope you've been having a good spring? I haven't been around much lately so I've missed all the goings on. If I have time, I'll do some catching up on your blog posts.