The 4 BEST Blue Jay Feeders Working For Me (2024)

My family loves watching Blue Jays visit our bird feeders!

the best bird feeders for blue jays

Frequently heard before being seen, jays typically don’t stay long at our feeding station. Once they land, they quickly take a whole peanut or fill their throat with sunflower seeds and fly off again.

Unfortunately, because of a Blue Jay’s relatively large size (9-12 inches long) and feeding preferences, they won’t use certain types of bird feeders.

For example, a typical tube feeder that features small perches next to feeding ports will NOT be used commonly by jays. They have a tough time fitting their body onto the perch and twisting around to eat.

So I thought I’d share the 4 BEST Blue Jay feeders that I use.

#1. Woodlink Tray Feeder

tray feeders

Woodlink 3 in 1 Tray Feeder  View Today's Price

This tray feeder made by Woodlink is arguably my favorite feeder to use for Blue Jays. The simple, open design is desirable to both jays and many other birds. They love the large surface area, which provides them with lots of room to land and find their food.

This tray feeder is versatile and can be used in three different ways. It can be hung, permanently attached to a pole mount, or laid on the ground (which is how I use it).

Check out the tray feeder in action below! The short video clip shows Blue Jays filling their throat with sunflower and corn.

Placing the tray on the ground also provides a great way to feed other birds that prefer feeding there, like native sparrows. Not to mention it gives mammals, like squirrels and raccoons, a place to eat, which helps keep them from trying to reach your bird feeders!

Here are a few other things that I like about the Woodlink tray feeder:

  • It has a mesh bottom so water drain outs, which helps the food dry faster and last longer.
  • Birds and other animals feel extremely comfortable on tray feeders. I have seen everything using it; crows, cardinals, sparrows, chipmunks, rabbits, opossums, etc.

#2. Droll Yankees Platform Feeder

best feeders for blue jays

Droll Yankees Platform Feeder   View $ on Amazon 

This platform feeder made by Droll Yankees does an excellent job of feeding Blue Jays. The wide (13″ diameter) plastic platform holds about a quart of seed and provides a large area for jays to land and feed.

The top plastic dome helps a bit to keep water and snow off the food, but don’t expect your food to be dry after rain. Luckily, the plastic tray has small holes to allow moisture to drain.

The dome is adjustable too, but you need to make sure it’s not too low for Blue Jays, or they won’t be able to fit! But the fact the dome can be lowered makes the feeder versatile in case you want to provide a place that only small birds can use.

I like that the durable, smooth plastic is EASY to clean. There are no hard-to-reach places where food and waste can accumulate. Simply spraying with the hose typically gets the job done!

The official name of this feeder is “Dorothy’s Cardinal Feeder.” It’s called this because the feeder is also great at attracting Northern Cardinals. You will find that jays and cardinals tend to prefer similar feeders.

#3. Use this tube feeder WITH an attached tray.

I know what you are thinking.

“Scott, I thought you said tube feeders are not a great option for Blue Jays!”

Yes, I did say that, because it’s true. But tube feeders can work for jays, but one slight adjustment is required.

You need to attach a tray to the bottom of your tube feeder!

In my feeding station, I combine tube feeders with attachable trays. The trays are incredibly easy to fasten to the bottom and typically don’t even require tools.

My tube feeders are probably the most popular in my backyard now that they have an area where larger birds can land and eat. Check out the live stream below where you can see my current setup, and you may see a tube feeder with a tray attached!     

Here is the information regarding the tube feeder and tray that I am currently using. They are both made by Aspects, so they are compatible with each other.

aspects tube feeder and tray

Check the prices on Amazon below:

#4. Peanut Wreath

peanut wreath to feed blue jays

Songbird Essentials Peanut Wreath    View $ on Amazon 

Peanut wreaths are one of the best Blue Jays feeders to use when you want to have your birds work a bit for their food!

Just fill the wreath from the top with whole peanuts. The metal wiring is strong enough to hold peanuts in place but flexible enough that jays can pull them out to eat.

Once Blue Jays discover the delicious peanuts hidden inside the wreath, they can’t resist visiting every day.

Final Thoughts

No matter which Blue Jay feeders you ultimately choose, remember they need to be filled with peanuts, sunflower seeds, or corn because these foods work best at drawing jays to your yard.

The four bird feeders listed above work well at attracting many different bird species, not just jays! Specifically, a quality tray feeder and tube feeder are essential for any bird feeding station.

What are the best feeders you have used for Blue Jays?

Good luck! Soon enough you should be enjoying these highly charismatic and intelligent birds all the time in your backyard. Maybe you can even train them to land on your hand?

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  1. Great information. I place my feeders so I can watch all the birds eat. I love watching the hummingbirds at my feeders too. So many personalities and habits. Thank you 😊

  2. I will NOT feed whole peanuts ever. When they drop the shells, they are very dangerous to dogs (and probably other animals). A friends dog ate a peanut shell which got stuck in her digestive tract and required emergency surgery. Vet said the shell usually can not pass thru. Also, we live in northeast Ohio, and we put up a metal gazebo from Wayfair out back and hang the feeders under it. The birds are fine with it and the seeds stay much dryer.

  3. Hey Scott! I live in Indiana and I hear a lot of blue jays every single morning. The first time I saw a jay was when I saw on eating my suet. But, I got a peanut wreath and replaced my old hopper feeder with it. I know blue jays are really smart, and I leave peanuts our for them every day on my sidewalk. The jays have used my old hopper a few times, so I guess they know where it is/was. Ever since I got the wreath, i have seen a lot less blue jays. I don’t know if it was a coincidence, or if the other birds are talking bad about my feeders! I want to feed the smart little jays, and I have never had a grackle/blackbird problem. Can you help, and thank you for even reading my comment. -Bobby

  4. Hi. Writing from Calgary, Canada. Love the blue jays here, but have trouble feeding them because of magpies. The black and white bullies steal the food (mostly peanuts) and scare everything except hawks away. Has anyone had any success?

  5. I use the Squirrel Buster Peanut+ Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder made by Brome. Even though the feeder is “squirrel proof”, I still hang it out of easy reach of the squirrels. It’s hanging on a thin rope from a tree branch- a little too far for the squirrels to jump to and they won’t climb down the rope like they will a metal hook.

  6. I was glad to read the info you put about the wreath peanut feeders. You say the wires are gentle enough to make it possible for the jays to pull the peanuts out. I am in a tricky situation. I have had to cut down on all kinds of feeders etc because pigeons are taking over and my neighbours do not appreciate the droppings all over their yard. I am trying to find a feeder to hang so the pigeons can’t land on it but the jays can. I have never seen my jays land on a vertical feeder but I’m sure they will learn. Is there anything else you can suggest to me so I can feed the jays and not the pigeons? Thank you so much for any advice., Also, I live in Alberta where winter temps go well below -20C (-4F) often. Will the wires of the wreath get too stiff for the jays to be able to pull the nuts out? If you can reply it would be greatly appreciated. I love my jays. ~ Joanne

    1. Hello Joanne. Pest birds like pigeons can be very frustrating. Here are my thoughts and experiments to try. First, I’m not sure how the metal wires of the peanut wreath will perform when it gets down to -20C, it gets cold in Ohio but not that cold! Jays are incredibly smart and adaptable and I bet they would find a way to get the peanut out, but you will never know until you try.
      To prevent pigeons, I would focus on foods they don’t like and feeders they can’t access. The peanut wreath is a great idea, but pigeons should not be able to eat whole peanuts no matter where you put them. Also, getting larger striped sunflower instead of black-oil sunflower, my guess is that pigeons can’t eat it because it’s too big. Also, whole kernel corn you could try, jays love it, not sure about pigeons and if they can eat it. Maybe a seed block/cylinder. I have one in my live cam right now of the feeders. I see jays feeding on it but the Mourning Doves don’t land on it to feed, my guess is pigeons would have the same problem. Hope that helps! Let me know if any feeding any of those foods keeps the pigeons away.