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What’s That Hen at Your Suet Feeder?

    Suet is a good way to draw a wide range of birds to your yard within the winter. To determine who’s who, use this information to work your approach by way of the same old suspects. And to maintain bettering your ID abilities, you’ll want to obtain our free Audubon chicken information app.


    In case your thriller chicken is tiny and spherical, with a grayish again, black cap, white cheeks, and a black chin, you’ve got obtained your self a chickadee. Within the northern states, it will be a Black-capped Chickadee. From Philadelphia southward, it will be the look-alike Carolina Chickadee. Out west, it is likely to be a Mountain Chickadee or Chestnut-backed Chickadee. They are all quite common yard birds.

    Black-capped Chickadee. Jeff O'Keeffe/Audubon Photography Awards

    Tufted Titmouse

    Now, in case your chicken is tiny and nearly all grey, with a small crest and a blot of black above its squat beak, a Tufted Titmouse has stopped by your suet. A well-recognized yard chicken within the jap U.S., the Titmouse will also be recognized by the rusty wash beneath its wings.

    Tufted Titmouse. Michele Black/Great Backyard Bird Count

    White-Breasted Nuthatch

    A bit bigger than the titmouse and chickadee is the White-breasted Nuthatch. This chicken has a white-to-gray breast, slate again, and black on its cap and nape. Additionally notable: their lengthy, skinny beaks and tendency to scale timber and grasp from feeders whereas the wrong way up.

    White-breasted Nuthatch. Michele Black/Great Backyard Bird Count

    Carolina Wren

    Arduous to confuse this little brown chicken with the others right here, however Carolina Wrens will fortunately swing by a suet feeder. These chatty birds could be rapidly recognized by the brilliant white strains above their eyes, a barely curved beak, and their upright tails, which they flick about as they busily hop round.
    Carolina Wren. Gary Mueller/Great Backyard Bird Count

    Downy Woodpecker

    Woodpeckers are a few of the most frequent suet visitors, and the Downy Woodpecker might be essentially the most frequent. The smallest of the North American woodpeckers, it has black and white markings on its face, wings, and again. Males additionally have a little bit of crimson on the again of their heads. Downy Woodpeckers are sometimes confused with the bigger Furry Woodpecker.
    Downy Woodpecker. Raymond Marino/Audubon Photography Awards

    Furry Woodpecker

    Talking of the Furry Woodpecker, it’s most likely the second most typical woodpecker to go to feeders after the smaller Downy. The 2 birds additionally look very comparable. To determine which you have got, think about the beak and the dimensions of the chicken in query. As a normal rule, you probably have a basic suet cage and the chicken is roughly the identical size or smaller, you have a Downy. If the chicken is a bit longer than the cage and has a thicker invoice, it is a Furry. As with the Downy, male Furry Woodpeckers have crimson on the again of their heads.

    Hairy Woodpecker. Ewa Mutzenmore/Great Backyard Bird Count

    Crimson-bellied Woodpecker

    Due to its distinguishing vivid crimson cap, the Crimson-bellied Woodpecker is typically confused with the Crimson-headed Woodpecker. However compared facet by facet, they’re very totally different trying birds. Crimson-heads are additionally not practically as widespread. An plentiful woodpecker within the jap U.S., the Crimson-belly is a medium-size woodpecker. Along with its crimson cap, it has a black-and-white striped again and a wash of crimson on its creamy-gray stomach, which is how the chicken obtained its title.

    Red-bellied Woodpecker. Michele Black/Great Backyard Bird Count

    Northern Flicker

    One of many extra putting birds you may see round your yard, the Northern Flicker is a big woodpecker that always visits suet feeders. With their noticed breasts, striped backs, black bib, and a flash of yellow or crimson within the wings once they fly, they’re beautiful birds that appear to be nothing else hanging from your suet feeder. Take pleasure in.

    Northern Flicker. David Zieg/Audubon Photography Awards