Attracting Nuthatches to Your Backyard

Nuthatches are probably one of the easiest backyard birds to identify. If you see a bird creeping downward on a tree, it's a nuthatch. It's the only species that can "walk down a tree." It needs no tail support because it has incredibly strong feet!

That said, generally you won't see too many nuthatches in your yard. Most nuthatches visit feeders in ones and twos. They are feisty and aggressive birds, and pairs generally defend a territory of 10 to 30 acres. They feast on seeds and insects found in trees, and many times will hide seeds from feeders in tree bark for a snack later in the day or breakfast the next morning.

In Simcoe County we are visited by two different nuthatch species Red-breasted Nuthatches and White-breasted Nuthatches.


The name Nuthatch results from the corruption of the word "nuthack" which refers to its habit of hacking away at a seed with its beak until it opens. To attract nuthatches to your yard, try a suet or peanut feeder as well as a blend high in sunflower. They also enjoy Jim's famous bark butter.