Robins are a cheerful sight in any garden, singing late into the night and scouting for something to eat. But what is it they're looking for?

What do robins eat?

Robins feed on insects (especially beetles) and worms. You might notice one following you about as your dig up your garden hoping to nab a few worms as you unearth them.

Robins can also eat fruit, seeds, suet, crushed peanuts, sunflower hearts and raisins. They particularly enjoy mealworms.

How to feed robins in your garden

Putting food out and waiting to see which birds stop by for their tea is always a treat, but not all birds eat the same foods or the same way. Here’s how to make sure you’re visited by Mr Robin Redbreast.

Ground feeding trays

Robins are natural ground feeders, so feeding trays are ideal. Make a mixture of bird seed, sunflower hearts and mealworms, sprinkle it out on a tray and wait for the robins to arrive.

As they’re such fans of mealworms, you can give them an extra helping hand by soaking dried mealworms in water, giving the robins some valuable moisture from the food.

Bird tables

Like ground feeding trays, bird tables give robins an easy place to eat.

Pop some fruit and mealworms out on the platform and watch them tuck in. You could also have a go at making your own bird cake or food bars using melted suet or lard. Just pour it into a mixture of seed, raisins and nuts, let it cool and place it onto the table.

You can leave food on an open bird table but make sure you remove it if it gets wet. Damp food is susceptible to mould and bacteria which can make birds ill. Covered bird tables are best as their roofs help keep food dry, protect smaller birds from predators, and can make it harder for wood pigeons to snaffle all the food!

Hanging feeders

Lots of garden birds, such as blue tits, house sparrows and goldfinches, will happily grab a bite to eat from bird feeders. Hang them up, fill them with nuts and seeds, and watch the birds flock to your garden.

That said, robins are not likely to visit a hanging feeder unless there is a platform next to it.

Top tips for feeding robins

Don’t forget to always provide fresh water for birds to drink and bathe in. And remember – no matter which birds you’re feeding, never put out milk as it can make them really ill.

It’s always best to avoid leaving bread out for birds. While it fills them up, it doesn’t provide the right sort of nutrients or energy they need each day. This is especially bad in winter when birds need lots of good quality food to boost their energy reserves and help them keep warm.

Attract birds to your garden

Buy feeders, nest boxes and more from our online shop.

Visit the shop now
Keep exploring