Wednesday, April 13, 2011

How to keep squirrels out of your bird feeders

There are many crafty ideas involving keeping squirrels out of the bird feeder. Some work, some don't and other ideas just aren't practical. If you live in South Carolina, pay a visit to Wild BirdsUnlimited in Columbia, and check out their squirrel proof feeders and great selection of bird feed too. There are certain things you can do that will keep the squirrels away from your bird feeders. Try these ideas.

  1. Buy weight sensitive bird feeders- Certain bird feeders are built with ports on them that are weight sensitive. Each perch that the bird lands on is calibrated to the weight of a standard songbird. When a larger animal grabs onto the perches, they push downward, seeming to break away from the ports, and bring a metal cover down over the seed openings. A squirrel simply can not gain entry. For a sample of this type of bird feeder see: Perky Pet Breakaway Squirrel Proof Bird Feeder .
  2. Feed the squirrels- Make sure to leave feed out specifically for the squirrels. There are a number of wonderful squirrel feeders, and some designs are basic enough that you can make them yourself. Squirrels love bird seed, and dried corn on the cob to feast on.
  3. Spice up your seed- Make bird seed less desirable to the squirrels by adding Cayenne pepper to the mix. While completely harmless to birds, squirrels can't tolerate it and will not eat the seed. Also try mixing safflower seed in with the regular seed, squirrels are not a fan of this type of seed. This may wear off in time so try number 4 if this doesn't work long enough.
  4. Peppermint- Place peppermint oil or even round/ ground up peppermint candy around and in the bird seed/feeder. Squirrels don't like the smell and will be turned off by it.
  5. Grease your pole- If your bird feeder is on a pole, use WD-40 or Vaseline on the pole, the squirrels can't climb up it. For more tips and gardening info, see: Dawn's Secret Garden
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