Why You May Not See As Many Cardinals Visiting Your Bird Feeder During Summer

Cardinals are some of the most vibrant birds that you're likely to see visiting your bird feeder, but you may find that it's harder to catch glimpses of them during the summer months. There are many reasons why they may want nothing to do with your yard, but it's not because they're not around. Cardinals don't migrate at all; instead, their habits simply tend to change with the seasons. You may not be seeing these birds in your yard because they're seeking other food sources that are available other than birdseed, you're looking outside at the wrong time of day, or they're busy nesting.

Cardinals have easier access to natural food sources during the summer, so they may be busy scavenging during this time. In the winter, fruit and insects are more scarce, while in the summer, it's easier for them to find things to eat like spiders, beetles, crickets, and butterflies as well as fruit and seeds. Furthermore, these feathered friends tend to come out more in the morning and the late afternoon. If you're only looking for them in the middle of the day or the evening, it's unlikely that you'll be able to spot them. It's also a bit easier to spot cardinals among dull winter colors than when there's more greenery around. Finally, cardinals breed and raise young during the summer, so they may be busy building nests instead of visiting your yard.

How to see more cardinals during the summer months

If the issue is that you're looking for these birds at the wrong time of day, get into the habit of looking out the window in the early morning and late evening, as this is when they're most likely to feed from your feeder. It can also help to fill your feeder early in the morning rather than in the middle of the day to guarantee that the birds always have food to eat. If they visit your feeder and it's empty, they may not visit as often in the future. 

On the other hand, you may not be seeing cardinals in your yard because they're busy nesting elsewhere. If you want to lure cardinals into your yard during the summer, provide good places for them to nest and breed. They breed between March and September and raise broods several times throughout the year. These birds actually don't like birdhouses, so adding them to the yard is a common mistake that everyone makes to attract cardinals. Instead, they prefer open space around their nests, so provide good nesting options by planting shrubs and trees. There are many beautiful trees that will have them flocking to your yard that you could plant in your outdoor space. Ideally, provide nesting options that are between 4 to 8 feet off the ground since this is the height range they prefer the most.