Striped sunflower seeds are larger and less expensive than black oil sunflower seeds. They have a thicker shell and a white stripe on them. The larger size and thicker shell can make them harder for the small birds to eat, but the larger heavy billed birds like cardinals, bluejays, woodpeckers and grosbeaks do not have any problem breaking through to the sunflower seed inside. The small birds such as chickadees, nuthatches and titmice also can open the shells of striped sunflower seeds and will eat them when nothing else is readily available.
Are you wondering if these are the same type of sunflower seeds we snack on? The answer is yes. You can find these seeds on the shelves of supermarkets and convenience stores everywhere. They are just as nutritional for the birds as they are for us because they contain calcium, magnesium, zinc and Vitamin E.
The crops of striped sunflower seeds are screened so that the largest of the seeds are what we buy. The smaller of these seeds or "left overs" as the industry calls them, are sold as wild bird seed. These smaller seeds are why it is easier for many types of birds to enjoy them.
Striped sunflower seeds are the perfect choice to distract larger birds away from your bird feeders. This gives the small birds a better chance of eating with less competition. But better yet, throw some down on the ground in an area not occupied by the birds. They make an inexpensive treat for those pesky squirrels and just might keep them away from your bird feeding areas.