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Blackbirds are among the most well-known wild birds in German-speaking countries. The blackbird's diet is varied. With the right food, you can help the animals to get through the winter without any effort.

In a nutshell

  • blackbirds eat soft food
  • hard cores such as grain or nuts are not accepted by the birds
  • only fruit, berries, seeds and insects are on the menu of the blackbird
  • plant food sources are preferred over the winter
  • Live food can be offered with a possible year-round feeding

8 blackbird feed presented

If you want to feed blackbirds over the winter period, you have a wide range of suitable foods to choose from. Since the birds are soft food eaters, they primarily eat from the following food groups:

  • Berry
  • fruit
  • live food
  • seed
  • soft cores

The birds do not touch nuts or grains. Because of this, you need to be very careful about what you offer the animals. In particular, do not provide ready-made mixes, as these often contain grains and nuts that are too hard and can rot or rot and pose a health risk to the blackbirds. The following sections give you an overview of 8 blackbird foods that birds like to eat during the cold season.

Tip: When providing food, be sure to pay attention to the origin. Ideally, the feed should be unsprayed, either from your own garden, from the wild or from organic farming.


While blackbirds mainly eat berries and live food such as worms or grubs during the main season, fruit is often eaten during the winter. Apples are particularly popular, which you should preferably cut into small pieces and distribute. You can offer softer apples whole if you like. The fruit is preferred when it snows or when the weather is permanently bad.


Berries are one of the most important food sources of blackbirds. Throughout the year, there are different species available to the birds, which they love to eat. They are therefore ideally suited as food. Above all, offer berries that are in season over the winter period. That would be:

  • Sea Buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides)
  • Snowberry (Symphoricarpos albus)
  • Rowan berries (Sorbus aucuparia)
  • Hawthorn (Crataegus)
  • Cotoneaster

You can offer these harvested and either fresh or dried. If you do not have these special plants available, you can feed them elder, juniper, raspberries, strawberries or currants if you buy them fresh.

Tip: Plant native berry bushes to automatically meet the bird's need for berries. At the same time they provide shelter, which means that you can observe more specimens in your garden.


Like the apple, you can offer pears as food for the blackbirds. Even wild pears (Pyrus pyraster) and service pears (Amelanchier) do not disdain the birds. Cut the fruit up as well before presenting it to the birds. A ration with apples, pears and rowanberries is particularly popular on days with unpleasant weather.


Blackbirds also eat oatmeal. In order to get the birds to eat the flakes, they have to be prepared. For this you have to soak the flake in sunflower oil. Be sure to wait until all the oil has been absorbed, otherwise the birds' feathers will stick together.

Oatmeal as an attractant


Due to their long availability, rose hips are also part of the blackbird's diet. They are very high in energy and taste extremely good to the birds. If you want to offer rose hips to the animals, you should mainly use the following types:

  • Vinegar Rose (Rosa gallica)
  • Dog Rose (Rosa canina)
  • Wine rose (Rosa rubiginosa)

These keep their fruit decoration for a particularly long time during the winter. You can either collect the fruit yourself or offer it via planted shrubs.


If you want to add seeds to the blackbirds' feed, you should rely on the following:

  • hemp seeds
  • Poppy
  • wheat bran

They are not too hard and make it easier for the animals to eat.

Turkish poppy, Papaver orientale


Dried fruits are also not wrong for the animals. If you choose this as blackbird feed, you should make sure that the raisins are unsulphured. The sulfur dioxide used for sulphurisation has a negative effect on the organism of the birds. For this reason, you should not use sulfurized ones.

sunflower seeds

A handful of sunflower seeds never hurt the birds. However, always offer this together with other blackbird food, as it takes on the function of a basic food. As with the oatmeal, you can prepare a kind of "muesli" for the animals.

frequently asked Questions

Can blackbirds be fed all year round?

Year-round feeding for blackbirds is not necessary. A wide range of food is available to the birds from spring to autumn. An exception are blackbirds in the urban environment. Food for them is extremely scarce. In this case you can feed berries (seasonal), cherries, green tomatoes and worms.

How is the blackbird feed best offered?

Unlike other birds, blackbirds do not feed from raised birdhouses. Soft feed eaters prefer their food close to the ground. Spread berries and fruit directly on the ground or under shrubs. Fill soft grains and dried fruit into a closed feed silo. Clean the silo daily and collect leftover feed residues.

Are blackbirds supplied with water over the winter months?

Yes, you should provide fresh water for the animals. You should think about it especially on dry days without snowfall or in areas without natural or artificial water sources. Fill the bowl with warm, not hot or boiling, water and clean it daily.

What should be considered when setting up the feeding station?

It is important that you create the feeding area protected from predators such as cats. Make sure that hiding places such as shrubs are at least 150 centimeters away from the perimeter of the food. This allows the birds to flee immediately if cats are sighted.

Is animal food suitable for feeding?

Worms, numerous beetles, insects, ants, centipedes, snails and even butterflies are among the birds' preferred food sources. Feeding live food is not necessary per se. You can offer mealworms during the breeding season and nestling rearing, as more protein is needed at this time.

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