Updated at: 18-06-2023 - By: Jane Brody

Although hemp seeds aren’t typically included in seed blends, they are adaptable enough to be. Hemp seeds can be tried risk-free, although it’s preferable if they’re exclusively sold deshelled.

Although hemp is a narcotic plant, the seeds themselves are extremely harmless for humans of any age and can be fed to the birds in your yard. While only a select few birds will be able to consume the tan/brown shelled seeds, all seed-eating birds will have access to the white translucent de-hulled Hemp seed.

Hemp Seeds For Birds

It’s one thing to try a new kind of food, especially if it’s leftovers or something no one else wants.

If you’ve been feeling bad about spoiling your backyard birds with unhealthy treats, consider switching to a new seed that is both nutritious and one that wild birds would naturally seek out in the wild.

Farmers wouldn’t want hemp seeds to be native to North America because then they’d be in serious difficulty. Hemp seed comes from cannabis plants but isn’t the portion of the plant that gives the drug its common name.

It is therefore secure to say that birds can safely consume hemp seeds.

You can either offer it in its shell, which will limit the number of birds that can open the shell and consume it, or you can purchase hemp seed that has been de-hulled, which will allow you to feed it to the vast majority of seed-eating birds.

Even though hemp seeds are dark in color, once you purchase them or crack them open, they take on a translucent white appearance.

If birds prefer to stick to their usual diet of sunflower and nyjer seeds, you may want to introduce this new type of bird seed to them gradually.

Birds Safe to eat Hemp seeds

Hemp seed is the same seed used to grow cannabis plants, however it doesn’t contain any of the psychoactive compounds of marijuana.

Despite this, it’s safe to claim that hemp seeds purchased from a reputable vendor or department store can be fed to wild birds.

Although it is acceptable to do so, unlike other types of seeds, hemp seed isn’t commonly included in wild bird seed mixes or given to birds as a sole food source.

Hemp seeds are a great source of protein and are available in both whole and hulled forms; whole, unhulled hemp seeds are a translucent white tint. I believe you may still find this seed in some seed mixes; it will appear as a light tan/brown color with its shell on.

Hemp seed is a fantastic nutritional boost for you and any seed-eating birds you share it with.

Fed to seed or nut-eating birds

Hemp Seeds For Birds-2

Most of the birds that come to our feeders and the ground in our yards already consume seeds, so you won’t have any trouble finding birds that will eat your hemp seeds.

Hemp seed has a nutty flavor and texture, making it an appealing food source for birds.

Although it is possible to place no more than an inch of hemp seed in a seed bird feeder to keep it dry, and if you can be sure it will be consumed, I would not recommend doing so.

If I were to plant a new batch of hemp seeds, I’d do so in an area frequented by birds, or else I’d raise them off the ground to protect them from the elements.

Unlike Nyjer and sunflower seeds, I can’t say with certainty how long hemp seed will remain in the open air, therefore it’s necessary to keep a check on it every day for symptoms of spoilage, such as a rotten odor.

Since birds tend to be picky eaters and refuse to try anything new, hemp seed is best used as part of a less expensive seed blend.

Shelled OR left hulled

Hemp seeds can be bought either shelled or hulled, just like the other common seed mixtures for wild birds.

If the birds you’re trying to attract really eat the hemp seeds you’ve shelled for them, the husks will end up all over the ground.

Finches and Blue Jays both can crack apart hemp shells of a brown or tan hue.

It is advised to only utilize hulled hemp seeds, as this de-shelled seed can be consumed by a wider variety of bird species.

For one, it allows all seed-eating birds to test them out without having to waste energy trying to crack the husks, and secondly, it prevents a pileup of husks in your yard.

If you must use shelled hemp seeds, it is best to crack open each one individually if you want the birds to eat them quickly.

If you have the opportunity, it will save you and your birds a lot of time and work if you purchase de-hulled hemp seeds, which have a white, translucent appearance.

Vitamin-rich seed to feed birds

Hemp Seeds For Birds-3

It may have been developed on cannabis plants, but eating the seed poses no threat of illness or adverse reaction in humans or children.

When it comes to their potential to harm human health, hemp seeds are on par with sunflower or nyjer seeds.

Your seed-eating birds will be grateful for the boost in stamina and health that the vitamin-rich hemp seeds will bring them while they forage all day.

I recommend giving your birds hemp seeds year-round, but especially during the colder months when significant weather changes can deplete nutritional stores and make it difficult for birds to find other sources of essential nutrients.

Vitamins may also contain a minute amount of fiber, which is useful for your birds.

Even though these seeds are excellent for the birds in your backyard, you should only give them to them for a short period of time before they go bad.


Hemp seed is safe for birds to eat because, despite being from the cannabis plant, it lacks the psychoactive components of marijuana.

As a completely safe food source, hemp seeds are a great way to let the backyard birds in your area try out a novel food source they have likely never tried before.

Generally speaking, any bird that eats seeds will consume your hemp seeds, but Jays, Finches, Chickadees, and Cardinals are more likely to do so.

If you find white, translucent hemp seeds, you can rest assured that they have been de-hulled and are now accessible to a larger variety of birds in your yard.

Hemp seeds range in color from pale tan to a dark brown, and because they are in their shell, only birds with strong beaks, such blue jays and finches, can eat them.

Vitamin-rich hemp seed is essential if you want to attract wild birds to your property.

In order to prevent wasting the new seed and in order to see how much or how little birds consume on a daily basis, I would only provide a tiny number of hemp seeds at a time.

Hemp seeds should be offered only in a seed feeder, with the option to scatter them on the ground for the small percentage of bird species that cannot utilize feeders due to their size or incompatible feeding habits.

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