Red-Breasted Nuthatch

Our winter visitors the red-breasted nuthatch is at back for the season.  As soon as the weather starts getting cold, I will usually see my first red-breasted nuthatch.

General Information

Red Breasted Nuthatch
Name::Red-Breasted Nuthatch
Scientific Name::Sitta canadensis
High Classification:Sittidae
Size:4.3  inches
Habitat:Woodlands, gardens, shrublands, and wetlands.
Diet:Insects, nuts, sunflower and safflower seeds, suet, and peanut butter.

What the Red-Breasted Nuthatch Looks Like

Red-breasted nuthatches are around 4-1/2 inches long and are a blue-grey colored bird with a black-capped head with white stripes above their eyes. Their breasted is a rusty nutmeg colored.  Females have a tad of a blue hue to the cap on their head.

Red-breasted nuthatches are around 4-1/2 inches long and are a blue-grey colored bird with a black-capped head with white stripes above their eyes.

Their breast is a rusty nutmeg colored. 


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Telling the Red and White Nuthatches Apart

The red-breasted nuthatch looks similar to the white-breasted nuthatch with a few distinguishing characteristics. 

The red-breasted nuthatch will have a black cap on its head, a black eyeliner, and a rusty breast.


Nesting

The red-breasted nuthatch is a cavity nester that does a very unique thing to protect its nesting areas from predators.  They take resin from surrounding pine and fir trees and paste it around the entrance to their nest to prevent ants and rodents from entering the cavity of their home in trees.

Birds excavate soft trees 5 to 15 feet from the ground and line the inside with a variety of soft leaves, sticks, and twigs.

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Nesting Info

Habitat:Well-concealed within the cavity of a tree
Nest ShapeThe chips and sawdust left after exca\ating act as a bed for their eggs.
Eggs:4-7 creamy white speckled eggs 
Incubation:12 days
Fledging:20 days after hatching


Offer A Buffet


Black Oil Sunflower Seeds


Striped Sunflower Seed

  • The #1 Seed to Attract Backyard Birds
    
  • Easy, Economical Seed
    
  • Best in Hopper, Tube & Platform Feeders

    PURCHASE ON AMAZON

Suet

  • Purchase varieties that have peanut butter, nuts, or insects incorporated into the mix.

    PURCHASE ON AMAZON

Mealworms

  • A large portion of the nuthatches diet is made up of insects.
  • Can be used for a variety of birds, including bluebirds in the spring.

    PURCHASE ON AMAZON

Peanut Butter

Smear some peanut butter on a dish or side of your feeder. Red-breasted nuthatches love it!


Best Feeders


Tube Feeders

Tube feeders are great for attracting smaller birds like red-breasted nuthatch, finches, chickadees, titmice, sparrows, goldfinches, and more!

Most of the feeders work great with mixed seed blends, black oil sunflower seeds, nyjer or thistle, safflower, and small nuts or peanuts.



Suet Feeders

If you purchase a suet feeder with a larger wooden base, you can feed larger woodpeckers from the feeder as well.

Woodpeckers like the Pileated woodpecker need to have the extra room and a base to balance their tail on when feeding.


Platform Feeders

You can purchase either the hanging variety or ground variety.

A tray design allows you to use a wide variety of seeds to be used for the red-breasted nuthatch.

The designs normally have a screen on the bottom for water drainage, keeping your seed fresh.

Platform feeders are excellent for both large and small birds.



Hopper Feeders

Hopper feeders will hold a variety of seeds. The design works well because it allows birds to perch on all sides.

You can hang the feeders in trees, on a shepherds hook, and attach them to poles.



They Are Caching Birds

Nuthatches love to grab seeds and then go and place them in cavities of trees, behind the bark of trees, and in every nook and cranny, they can and save them for times they are low on food sources.

Red-breasted nuthatch love to grab seeds and then go and place them in cavities of trees, behind the bark of trees, and in every nook and cranny, they can and save them for times they are low on food sources.


Try Your Hand at Feeding Them

One of our favorite things to do during the winter is to try our hand, at feeding nuthatches and chickadees.  We have had good success during previous winters.

One of our favorite things to do during the winter is to try our hand, at feeding red-breasted nuthatches and chickadees.  We have had good success during previous winters.


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