Updated at: 05-08-2022 - By: Jane Brody

Even though bluebirds are often seen on the ground, they prefer to feed from perches or other raised surfaces, so any feeder or dish provided for them should be placed at least a few inches off the floor.

Feeding bluebirds is as simple as providing them with a specific blue dish on a Bluebird feeder, where they can enjoy either live or dry mealworms. Mealworms can be fed in virtually any type of ceramic bowl, but they do best with no feeder at all. Use the pole-mounted feeder, or any other type of open-face feeder.

Mealworms For Bluebirds

Bluebirds have been seen swooping down to the ground for small periods of time to gather insects, and have even been known to catch insects while in flight.

Given that Bluebirds’ in-flight feeding behavior can’t be replicated when fed mealworms in this fashion, it’s not always clear whether to feed them dried or live mealworms.

Fortunately, we now know that bluebirds may be lured to feeders, and we can coax bluebirds to eat from a conveniently placed feeder. If you want to attract bluebirds, you need to provide them with a feeder that allows them easy access.

Wild birds of all kinds can be enticed with dried mealworms, with the exception of bluebirds, which require their food to be displayed in an open tray; alternatively, if you know the birds will find the mealworms throughout the day, you can scatter them in trees or vegetation [as seen in the featured image above].

Bluebirds would rather have their mealworms exposed to the outdoors, even if they could be kept dry and easily accessible in a wire bird feeder.

Whether you’re using dry or live mealworms, I recommend placing them in a shallow cereal bowl or an old pet food bowl (preferably one that is blue to attract Bluebirds) and placing it in a highly trafficked area of your yard.

You can utilize natural flora or trees to drop out mealworms, or you can use the railing of your porch or deck, a fence, a wall, or even the top of an abandoned bird house.

Add Mealworms to Blue dish

If you want to attract bluebirds so that you can feed them dried or live mealworms, the first thing you need do is get a dish that is blue in color.

A stunning blue hue may entice local bluebirds to your feeder, which contains a tasty mealworm treat. Bluebirds are known to be drawn to the brilliant blue plumage of other bluebirds.

When it comes to feeding bluebirds, the best feeders are those designed for mealworms, with the blue dish serving as a receptacle for dry or live mealworms — or, if you prefer, a bunch of wild berries, which are especially appreciated in the winter.

Though you may not come to rely on them, individual blue dishes have the advantage of being easily relocated to the best location in the yard for attracting Bluebirds and other birds.

Feeding bluebirds specifically requires a blue bird feeder with a spare dish for adding dried or live mealworms.

You can use a glass dish on a wall or a hanging hook, or you can attach one or two dishes to a small, open feeder with a roof.

Feed Bluebirds Mealworms on surface

Mealworms For Bluebirds-2

Given that bluebirds are just one type of insectivorous backyard bird, and that they, like American robins, have a hard time fighting off small, compact bird feeders, it stands to reason that the best place to put mealworms for bluebirds would be on the outside of feeders.

You don’t have to go out of your way to buy a special blue feeder to attract bluebirds; all you need to do is put out some dried (or live) mealworms in a strategic location.

Despite the fact that bluebirds are frequently seen flitting to the ground rather than landing in order to catch insects in flight, deciding how to feed them can be challenging.

Since bluebirds like perching on platforms, we can follow the guidelines by scattering mealworms at strategic locations on the lawn.

This can be done by sprinkling dry mealworms along a fence or deck railing, atop a wall, or atop a fence post.

Bluebirds prefer dining in the open rather than foraging on the ground, therefore don’t encourage them to do so by offering them food on the ground.

If you want to attract bluebirds, you shouldn’t place dry or live mealworms in a bird feeder, but if you want to keep the mealworms alive in bad weather, that’s an alternative.

Pole-mount Mealworm feeder dish

Feeding bluebirds high off the ground protects them from cats and other predators.

If you want to provide Bluebirds with mealworms, all you need is a traditional bird feeding station or a Shepard’s Hook pole and a wire mesh metal tray.

A dish or tray that can be installed anywhere on the pole can be used to provide birds with food like mealworms, which do not often go in feeders, allowing you to attract a wider variety of birds to your yard.

If a bird feeder has dried or live mealworms, bluebirds will try to use it. This open face tray is very useful for giving dried mealworms or the writhing live mealworm alternative.

This straightforward metal dish may be put on a pole and used to provide mealworms for Bluebirds.

Rather than walking on the mealworms, bluebirds will perch around the edge, and any rain will simply drain through the wire mesh.

Favor unobstructed open bowl

Mealworms For Bluebirds-3

There’s no harm in considering the plight of other bird species who either can’t or won’t utilize a bird feeder, as bluebirds are just one of many typical backyard birds that consume mealworms, such with orioles, wrens, and the dependable Cardinal.

If you have access to either dried or live mealworms, you can use them to fill an unused porcelain bowl or a small pet food dish.

Putting out a bowl on a flat surface in the yard allows birds of all sizes and abilities to access the food within.

Even if you didn’t want to specifically attract bluebirds, you still could use a porcelain bowl in that color to do so; however, you can’t get away with feeding solely bluebirds; other birds will show up to eat.

A shallow but hefty ceramic bowl that doesn’t topple over when swarmed by birds is the best option for feeding the wild birds in your yard dried mealworms.

This bowl should be placed on a raised platform in your yard, preferably in a sunny spot where Bluebirds may easily access it.


As a first step, you should empty any leftover mealworms, either dried or live, into a dish that is typically attached to a Bluebird feeder with a roof.

The mealworms will be protected from the outdoors, and the Bluebirds will be able to feed in a manner most suited to their limited abilities thanks to the platform provided by the feeder.

If you want to attract Bluebirds to a food source, you should use a dish that matches their signature blue plumage, which is why it’s likely to be blue.

Instead of purchasing a Bluebird-specific bird feeder, you can use an unused cereal bowl or pet food dish that is still blue but is shallow enough for Bluebirds and other birds to easily access the food.

You can’t use a bowl, dish, or hanging bird feeder since the birds will eat the mealworms before they get to the feeder. Instead, you’ll need to use items like natural greenery in your yard.

Only use dried mealworms, as live ones will quickly disappear if you put them in a bowl.

This is an excellent illustration of how to provide Bluebirds with a clear, unobstructed, and secure feeding environment for mealworms when using a bird feeder pole that comes with a metal tray to install to the pole.

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