Want to attract more birds to your North Carolina backyard?
Feed the birds, plant shrubs and flowers they’d love in your garden. In no time, you should start seeing a few beautiful species frolicking in your yard.
But you most likely know that already.
And want to know your potential visitors a little more up close.
In this list, I’ll show you North Carolina birds that are most likely to visit your backyard.
What do they look or behave like? How can you attract them? Is it difficult?
You’ll find out in a bit.
Top 10 Most Common Backyard Bird Species in North Carolina
1. Northern Cardinal
The Northern Cardinal is a unique bundle of beauty and courage. Ironically, they are known to fight their reflection (trespasser) in mirrors, which can be a bad and good thing – fun to watch, but can get bloody for the bird.
Nonetheless, their captivating red plumage and affectionate side are an incredible sight to behold. Sometimes, you may catch a cardinal couple feeding each other if you watch frequently.
The best part about the Northern Cardinals is that they are year-round visitors to North Carolina residents. This gives you an abundance of their rare personality in your backyard.
Also, they’re punctual. Cardinals are usually the first and last avian visitors at a feeding station.
If you want to attract Northern Cardinals, do these:
- Feed sunflower seeds
- Use a hopper or tray feeder
- Learn tips to attract them
2. Carolina Wren
The Carolina Wren is a home-favorite in North Carolina and much of eastern America.
The chunky bite-sized bird is also an avid explorer. You’d find a few of them navigating your backyard, garage, or nesting, even in an old coat or jacket. You just need to make them feel at home.
Essentially, the Carolina Wren frolics around shrubs and thickets – waiting for the perfect time to swoop in for a treat at your feeder.
If you want to attract the Carolina wren, serve black oil sunflower seeds. Suet is also a sumptuous alternative, especially in winter.
3. Carolina Chickadee
If you serve seeds in any North Carolina backyard, you will likely have this bird as the first visitor.
The Carolina Chickadee is about the size of an American Goldfinch – a little bird in essence. That said, it feels at home in cities, towns, or villages. In fact, if you’re friendly enough, she’d eat seeds off your hand.
Typically, the Carolina Tit isn’t much work to attract. If you want them to nest, set up bird boxes streamlined to their size. Not that they won’t find a way to already once they get fed regularly in your yard. Serve BOS or suet on a hopper feeder to reduce competition with larger birds.
4. Tufted Titmouse
The Tufted Titmouse is another popular North Carolina bird. It has a fluffy crest and chest, with pale dark grey plumage.
If you judge by character, this is a close cousin of the Northern Cardinal. It’s a funny bird to watch with its comical childlike personality.
The Tufted Titmouse is an all-year visitor, especially in winter. And they eat almost any seed you’d serve, such as sunflower, peanuts, suet, and so on.
Finally, by feeding this bird, you are serving a greater course than just your pleasure – you’ll help the species expand to the north.
5. Mourning Dove
Whether you like the famous coos of the mourning doves or not, they are going to visit your feeders at first.
It’s up to you to feed them or keep them off your feeders. They can be invasive, and I personally don’t fancy their droppings all over my patio.
But if you want to keep them, serve seeds like corn, millet, or BOS in a ground feeder.
Typically, you’d have to resist serving these foods if you don’t want Mourning Doves in your yard. However, you can install a small wired mesh feeder to keep the doves out and allow smaller songbirds access.
6. Red-Bellied Woodpecker
If you live close to a woodland in North Carolina, you have a higher chance of attracting this beauty.
The Red-Bellied Woodpecker, ironically, has a red-colored head and a black-and-white body. But don’t make the mistake of calling it a Red-Headed Woodpecker. That’s another species entirely.
Like every woodpecker, the red-bellied woodpecker would nest in a dead around your home.
If your backyard fits the bill, serve peanuts and sunflower seeds, and suet in winter.
7. Blue Jay
“The Blue Jay is one of our best-known birds, breeding across all 100 counties of the state.” – NC Carolina Bird Club.
That’s one thing. Here’s another thing. The Blue Jay is easily the most aggressive visitor at any feeder, especially if there’s an abundance of smaller birds. It won’t be surprising to see one knocking on your window.
But, then again, it’s hard for anyone not to want these beautiful creatures at all. So, if you prefer not to keep them out totally, serve them peanuts away from your main feeders.
Just a reminder, blue jays have something of an appetite!
8. American Robin
This beautiful songbird is no stranger to the North Carolina backyard, foraging for worms and insects in the grass.
In no time, you would be telling tales of its spring-ushering tunes. Or maybe fall-in-love with its “eyeliner” mark.
The Robin’s diet is typically made up of worms and fruits. Fortunately, you can recreate these Robin delicacies at your feeder by serving mealworms and berries in a suitable platform or tray feeder.
Finally, you can expect to host this friendly bird all-year-round.
9. American Goldfinch
The beautiful yellow feathers of the Goldfinch is always a pleasure to watch in North Carolina backyards.
Popular in the avian world for it’s “gold” plumage, the Goldfinch is also called a “wild canary.” The non-breeding female or male has a cooler olive color.
The Goldfinch is only about 5 inches from bill to tip, but having a few of them in your backyard, can be tranquil and eye-catching.
The Wild Canary is an acrobatic bird that loves to cling while eating. Speaking of which, it’s easier to attract this bird in a weedy area with an abundance of thistle plants. But you don’t necessarily have to fit the exact description.
If you want the goldfinch frolicking in your yard, serve nyjer or BOS seeds in a tube or sock feeder.
10. Northern Mockingbird
The Northern Mockingbird is more of a passerby than a regular visitor.
But the mockingbird is not one to easily pass up. Its unique mimicking melody piercing through your home regularly can become an addiction.
Mockers don’t often stay at a feeder. But they might swoop in intermittently for a quick feed ever so often. Sometimes, you may catch sight of their outstretched wings fighting off intruders. Or find a pair perched on a fence nearby, singing.
In the end, you can entice them with mealworms, suet, or fruits, like berries and apple slices.
As you welcome these common North Carolina birds to your backyard, you’d usher in so much more.
You’d begin to notice the tiniest details on different species, like markings or their calls. A quality birding binocular should help you out with the former.
Also, install birdbaths close to your feeders to attract a greater diversity of birds to your yard.
On a final note, learn more about attracting different bird species to your backyard, the best feeders, and other birding equipment from Garrett at Birding Hub.