Updated at: 16-08-2022 - By: Jane Brody

Dried mealworms should be offered in the open to birds that mostly consume insects, but there may be restrictions if pest birds are consuming them all.

Dry mealworms can be given to birds by placing them in an open dish and hanging it from a pole or limb. Put some dried mealworms in a feeder for the lawn’s insect-eating birds, or use them as a restriction tool. To attract wild birds to your yard and provide them with a safe location to eat, try putting out some mealworms on some of the higher spots around your yard.

How To Feed Birds Mealworms

Dried mealworms have many advantages over live mealworms for bird feeding, the most notable being the flexibility with which they can be presented to the birds.

Dried mealworms can be brought into the area of insectivorous birds, provided it is calm at the time, by using a dish you can place them in.

Dry mealworms in a dish can attract birds like bluebirds and robins, while a wire bird feeder would attract sparrows.

Even while bluebirds will eat mealworms from a covered feeder, smaller birds should stick to the uncovered dish.

You may also attract insect-eating birds to your backyard by scattering large quantities of dried mealworms about the space.

The dried mealworms that orioles eat can be placed in a dish on the nectar-filled feeder that is specifically designed for them.

I would rely on putting dry mealworms in a dish when the weather permits it, or otherwise mealworms can simply be dropped on a tiny piece of grass.

Most mealworm-eating birds are ground feeding birds after all therefore will probably spend some time exploring under bird feeders that are hanging above on a pole or tree.

Better still, mealworms can be placed on various spots around the yard with a natural habitat like trees or foliage, with garden furniture, fences or a wall to fall back on.

Utilize open dish to hang

One technique or what can be the only way to feed insect-eating wild birds in our yards at this time, without introducing frequent bird feeder pests like squirrels or raccoon’s, would be to offer dried mealworms to birds in a hanging open dish.

Hanging dish because the distance from the ground will dissuade pets or vermin – or at least you may put in place squirrel or raccoon deterrents – while this area will provide a safe place for wild birds to perch as they dine.

While Gray Catbirds come to feeders for dry mealworms – as seen to pick up one, two, three or even four dried mealworms at a time – before flying off to safety is the only conceivable method to give a safe-heaven for your birds.

Utilize an open dish that can provide up to three open sides whereby one side of the dish will be assigned for the hang bar.

Do not use bird feeder trays that hang from chains or ropes; these may be too restrictive for the birds you want to attract, while also posing an unneeded barrier to larger birds like Grackles and Blue Jays.

If you want to attract birds to your yard, a bird feeder pole in the open yard under the sunshine is preferable to a hidden but inconvenient tree branch.

Mealworm feeder to apply restrictions

How To Feed Birds Mealworms-2

Some people may enjoy having huge birds such as grackles, starlings, and grosbeaks visit their feeders, but others may prefer to set up barriers to prevent these noisy, aggressive birds from eating all the seed intended for the smaller, gentler species.

You may want to consider placing dry mealworms in a real enclosed bird feeder with a little perch, as these birds and others will plunder your dried mealworms from an open bird feeder dish or platform.

You know the kind, its like a clear tube feeder meant to filter seeds though the ports, only the bird feeder made for dried mealworms functions a little differently. Still, the adjacent little perch should be enough to dissuade most large nuisance wild birds.

Saying that, isn’t a wonderful approach to feed Robins, Bluebirds or Orioles in your yard, since they all need their own specialized manner to feast on mealworms.

However, a seed-like hanging bird feeder will attract a wide variety of birds, including sparrows, titmice, nuthatches, warblers, chickadees, and, unhappily for many of us, starlings in large numbers.

Rather than using a tube feeder designed for mix bird seeds, you should use a feeder specifically designed to hold dried mealworms.

Dried mealworms won’t work in a seed feeder, and vice versa, because the ports on the latter are too small to accommodate the larger seeds used to feed wild birds.

Mealworm-eaters fed on ground

It turns out that the only way to feed most of the insect-eating birds that visit our yards is to simply dump some dried mealworms on the ground, as opposed to using any form of bird feeder.

Whether you have large or little wild birds, birds that are fully capable of using a bird feeder or none at all, you can start shifting their attention to mealworms supplied in the open by scattering dried mealworms on your grass.

WARNING: If you feed birds dried mealworms and then move them far from the spot where they’ve been accustomed to finding food, the mealworms will go to waste.

To get the birds interested in the feeder again, try feeding only a small number of dry mealworms at first, and then gradually increasing the number of mealworms offered to the birds you know will eat them all.

Most of the birds that visit our feeders are only interested in eating insects, and their natural feeding pattern involves foraging on the ground.

If you’ve been feeding the same few types of birds dried mealworms in an enclosed bird feeder, hung from a pole or branch, you’ve just opened up your yard to the possibility of feeding a much wider variety of bird species.

When feeding on a small suspended compact feeder, cardinals had been spotted previously struggling, but now they can consume dried mealworms off the ground with ease.

There are many kinds of birds that visit our backyards, and I can assure you that scattering dried mealworms on a small area of lawn where birds can locate them is a great method to feed them.

Site Mealworms on visible yard surface

Putting solely dried mealworms in a feeder or dish can actually prohibit some species from ever feasting on accessible mealworms, as our typical backyard birds all have their own demands and requirements.

Some bird species, due to their innate eating habits, will instead choose to forage for earthworms on the ground rather than visit the bird feeders hung from the ceiling.

Do not assume that putting out bird feeders will attract all local avian life because you have been led to believe that this is all that is necessary to keep them fed. Many bird species have evolved with the sole purpose of foraging on the ground and, as a result, never even consider visiting a feeder.

Thankfully, while wet weather can be a problem, we don’t have to feed these birds dried mealworms directly on the ground; instead, we feed them on high spots visible from anywhere in the yard.

Surfaces can vary, but it’s important to select locations that will be convenient for birds that consume insects.

It is best to start by scattering dried mealworms among natural foliage and on tree branches in areas where wild birds are seen.

The tops of fence posts, brick walls, garden ornaments, and even tree stumps are all good places to scatter dried mealworms.

Pop in dish to stay mobile

How To Feed Birds Mealworms-3

If you want to attract birds to your backyard but don’t have a feeder, you can still provide them with a safe food source by placing dried mealworms on visible, high surfaces around the yard.

Some birds still prefer to browse from perches or other elevated locations, so I’d use a dish or mounted bird feeder tray to provide mealworms for them.

Then, you can move this dish of dried mealworms around the yard until you locate a site where the birds can eat in peace.

Your dish or tray of dried mealworms will be stolen by birds in no time, no matter where you put it, so it’s important to at least stay in one location.

As the mealworms can be contained in one area, and the birds can pick and choose from them from a perch around the dish’s edge, I find this method to be the most effective approach to feed birds.

Since the dried mealworms are fed in a dish, the amount eaten can be accurately measured.

If you want to feed birds in a more natural fashion, among bushes, on the lawn, or even in the tree branches, you don’t need a dish or any kind of bird feeder tray.


Dried mealworms are a popular type of wild bird feed, so if you go to the trouble of putting them out for the birds in your yard, you can rest assured that they won’t go to waste.

The first step in successfully providing dry mealworms to wild birds (as opposed to live mealworms) is to get a high-quality open bird feeder dish that may be hung from the pole or branch of the bird feeding station.

Although many insectivorous birds may be drawn to a branch of a nearby tree, the bird feeder pole should only be placed in a well-lit area to attract birds.

Our yards attract a wide variety of birds, including some that eat insects, so it only makes sense that we stock our bird feeders accordingly. A bird feeder, or even a dish, isn’t always reliable because not everyone knows how to use it or would bother trying.

Dried mealworms would be my preferred method of providing food for the wide variety of backyard birds I see.

A hefty dish, preferably ceramic so as to prevent it from toppling over in usage, will allow me to monitor the amount of time that passes between the consumption of dry mealworms and their subsequent disposal.

I will know when to add more dried mealworms if they are popular, but if they aren’t consumed quickly enough, I won’t replace them quite yet or will only add a few as a garnish.

However, you should still scatter dry mealworms over a small patch of grass, especially under the feeders, to attract birds who may only eat the ground.

In order to keep unwanted birds and vermin off of the mealworms, a specialized bird feeder should be used.

To avoid pests, it may help to scatter dried mealworms around the yard in strategic, high, well-lit areas.

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