Frequently Asked Questions
We offer 100% customer satisfaction. If an item is not what you expected, it may be returned for a refund if it is unused and in the original condition and packaging. Please call 800-817-8833 Ext. 1 for a return authorization information. Shipping charges are not refundable. Some special sale items may be marked unreturnable.
We ship most of our items using Fed EX ground.
The cost of shipping depends on the weight and size of the box. It also depends on where the package is being shipped. We won't know the exact cost of shipping until the order is packaged and put into the shipping computer.
If possible we will send smaller, light-weight items like replacement parts in a small bubble envelope in the mail, and customers will just be charged for the postage.
In some cases, the website shipping calculator may overestimate the shipping cost of these small items or multiples of the same item. If that is the case, we will charge the actual, lower shipping cost to your credit card and we will notify you through e-mail if a reduction in the shipping cost has been made.
Most orders are shipped within one to two business days.
Please call 800-817-8833, ext 1 and indicate if the package was damaged or what item was missing. We will promptly send replacement items or parts.
At Birds Choice, we do our best to ensure that your personal information is protected and kept confidential. When you purchase items on our website, your address and your payment information are encrypted using SSL technology. We will not give or sell your information to any third party. Your personal information will be kept private and will only be used to complete your online purchase.
Spring and summer are excellent times to feed the birds in your yard. In spring, many species are returning from a long migratory journey in the tropics and need nourishment from their lengthy, exhausting flight. Spring is a great time to attract birds into your yard. If you are feeding them, they will likely build their nests in and around your yard. Having access to bird feeders allows the nesting females to spend less time looking for food and more time in their nests. This leads to a more-protected nest from predators, earlier fledging of the baby birds and a higher survival rate of the broods.
Hummingbirds darting around your nectar feeder are a delightful vision and, they certainly appreciate having a ready source of energy. Summer is also the peak of the bright colors on many backyard birds, especially the finches. The beauty of the birds at your feeders, combined with the green lawns and beautiful flowers make it an awesome time to sit and enjoy your yard and the feathered friends that you welcome into it.
If you have grackles in your yard raiding your feeders and driving away the birds that you want to feed, here are a few tips:
- Donâ€™t feed bread or other food scraps. Grackles will take advantage of almost any food source available. Food scraps will attract other rodents into your yard as well.
- Use suet feeders that require birds to cling upside-down to eat. Birds Choice has numerous upside-down suet feeders that are grackle-resistant. Woodpeckers and nuthatches will have no problem using it.
- Donâ€™t allow spilled seed to accumulate under your feeders. Grackles like to feed on the ground.
- Donâ€™t use cheap seed mixes that contain fillers such as cracked corn. Grackles love corn. Stick to the basics such as sunflower, nutrasaff or nyjer seed.
- Use a feeder that allows you to control the size of bird that feeds from it. Birds Choiceâ€™s hanging classic feeder, the baffle/weather guard is adjustable. Moving it closer to the perches eliminates the bigger birds like grackles from using it.
- Remember that you donâ€™t always have a choice of what species come to your feeders. It may be tough to exclude the birds you donâ€™t like while feeding the birds that you do want at your feeders.
One way to deter bees from your hummingbird or oriole feeder is to fill your feeder only half full with liquid. The specially tapered holes on your Birds Choice feeder are designed to stop the bees' tongues from reaching far into the nectar. Another thing is to put vasoline around the ports. The hummingbirds and orioles won't mind the vasoline, but it will deter the bees.
Another way to stop bees and other pests is to create a decoy nectar dish. Start by putting some of your used nectar in a dish on the ground below your feeder. As the bees are attracted to the decoy dish, begin moving the dish in small increments away from your feeder. Most bees will prefer this open dish on the ground rather than your hanging or mounted feeder.
A customer service representative can be reached by e-mail through the "Contact Us" page. To speak to a customer service representative, you can call 800-817-8833 Ext. 1. The best time to reach customer service is Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Central Standard Time.
No, you will not attract bluebirds if you hang your house. Bluebird houses must be mounted. (Please refer to the FAQ "How do I mount my bluebird house?")
Your bluebird house should be mounted 4 to 5 feet above the ground in a grassy open area. The bluebird house poles that Birds Choice sells will be the correct height for bluebirds.
Recipe One: From WildBird Magazine. Very good warm weather suet because it will not run.
1 cup of lard (8 oz, no substitutions)
1 cup (8 oz) of crunchy peanut butter
2 cups of "quick cook" oats
2 cups of cornmeal
1 cup of white flour
1/3 cup of sugar
Melt the lard and peanut butter over a low heat (just enough heat to melt the lard, do NOT "cook" it). Remove from heat and stir in the remaining ingredients. Transfer to shallow Styrofoam meat trays about 3/8" thick, pie tins or the equivalent. You can either press flat to about a 3/8" thick layer, or form into thick slabs and later slice into 3/8" thick pieces when filling the feeder. Cover and refrigerate or freeze.
Recipe Two: Low temperature version of Recipe One. The following recipe uses peanut oil in place of lard because it does not solidify as hard as lard, and thus permits easier suet removal by woodpeckers when temperatures are at or below zero.
1 cup of peanut oil (8 oz)
1-1/2 cups (12 oz) of crunchy peanut butter
1/2 cup corn syrup
2 cups of "quick cook" oats
2 cups of cornmeal
Follow the same preparation procedure as Recipe One.
- Dissolve 6.4 oz nectar packet in 4 cups of boiled water. (Or approx. 1 cup of boiled water to 1/4 cup of sugar). Let cool before filling feeders. Store extra nectar in the refrigerator to prevent spoiling.
- Dissolve 6.4 oz nectar packet in 6 cups of boiled water. (Or approx. 1 cup of boiled water to 1/6 cup of sugar). Let cool before filling feeders. Store extra nectar in the refrigerator to prevent spoiling.
- Dissolve 7.5 oz butterfly nectar packet in 6 cups of boiled water. (Or approx. 1 cup of boiled water to 1-1/2 tablespoons of sugar). Let cool before filling feeders. Store extra nectar in the refrigerator to prevent spoiling.
No, you don't need to take your hummingbird feeder down to ensure migration. The hummingbirds will leave when they are ready, they know by the number of daylight hours when it is time to migrate. They will not stay in your area just because you are feeding them. Just when you think they have left, you may see another hummingbird. It is probably one that is migrating from farther north and happens to spot your feeder and stops to get renourished before continuing on. The migrating birds really need that, so leave your feeders up for about 2 weeks after you think they have left.
Before and after the flower season, is when the butterflies need the nectar in your feeder the most. You can also put ripe fruit like bananas on the top to attract butterflies. If you want to save on nectar, put small pebbles or rocks in the nectar base. This will raise your nectar level without using so much nectar.
The best product to feed your hummingbirds, orioles, or butterflies is specially formulated nectar. We have two kinds of nectar. Our Birds Choice Butterfly Nectar is formulated with sugars, salts, and amino acids designed specifically for butterflies. We also have Oriole & Hummingbird Nectar that is also specially formulated and can be used in different proportions depending on which type of bird you are trying to attract.
NEVER use dyes or artificial sweeteners in your feeders. Artificial sweeteners have no food value and will harm your birds and butterflies. If nectar is not available, use 100% pure granulated white sugar, the ration is 4 parts sugar to 1 part water. Boil to dissolve the sugar and cool before filling the feeder.
Orioles love grape jelly. Many people have had great success by using grape jelly to attract them. At certain times during their nesting season or when they first arrive in Spring, orioles will devour oranges (cut them in half for easy access). When they are feeding their babies, they also like mealworms which provide easy protein for them to take back to the nest.
The garden hose adapter in your dripper kit is used to connect the copper dripper tube and the tubing. By loosening the compression nut on the garden hose adapter, it is often easier to slide the copper dripper tube into one end. If loosening the compression nut doesn't work, you may need to take off the compression nut, push the copper dripper tube in, and then screw the compression nut back in to the garden hose adapter.
On occasion granite recirculating drippers after they are unplugged for cleaning, won't run when the customer plugs it in again. In most cases this is because there is water sitting in the pump and the tubing connected to the pump. To get your recirculating dripper running again, shake out the water in your pump and the tubing. There is a small hole in the tubing to help you get out the excess water. If shaking out the water, doesn't fix the problem, let your recirculating dripper sit for a day. After a day, shake it again to see if any more water will come out and then plug it in.
Inside the feeder is a clear plastic piece called a seed diverter. This piece should be at the bottom of the feeder with the legs on the bottom and the arched part facing the top of the feeder. Set on the bottom of the feeder and fill with seed, this will meter the seed being sent to the ports to prevent seed from being wasted.
Yes, we have a 2â€™ extension available. Look on the website under accessories.