Squirrels are known for their persistence and craftiness when it comes to hunting for food in the garden. If you're looking for a squirrel-proof bird feeder, here are some products to keep them at bay without harming them...
1. Weight sensitive perches
Squirrels are enthusiastic foragers, who are constantly on the hunt for food to eat. Weight sensitive perches are a clever way to keep squirrels off the feeders without having cages. It's one of the most popular ways to deter squirrels, but how does it really work?
Typically, the perches are attached to a spring on the feeder. Once a certain amount of weight is put on the perches (from heavy squirrels), an activated door will come down and close off access to the bird food, meaning your birds can eat in peace.
Placing a bird feeder that is surrounded by a cage is one of the most certified ways to ensure that squirrels or other large birds keep their distance. While the opening of the cage is small enough for birds, it stops squirrels entering.
Before placing one of these in your garden, it's worth noting that it can also stop larger birds from getting to the food, as the hole is fairly small. Of course this all depends on the what kind of birds you want to provide food for.
3. Bird feeders that spin
These feeders are battery-powered and work by spinning quickly when a squirrel steps on the feeder, to confuse them into stepping off. Once they have removed themselves, the feeder will stop spinning. If you're looking for an efficient way to keep squirrels away from pinching your bird food, this is one of the best options to go for. Unlike the other options, this one does require batteries in order for it to work.
4. Squirrel guard pole
Transform your existing feeder into a squirrel proof bird feeder by placing this easy cone on top of it. Being easy to attach and remove as you wish, if you place this in your garden, make sure you position your feeders far enough away from nearby objects, so squirrels can't reach or jump across.
Squirrels are known for their crafty climbing techniques, but this cone-shaped lid will sit on top of the food so that only small birds can enter. Most squirrels won't be able to squeeze their way though the top.
5. Squirrel slinky
This incredibly clever tool works by moving squirrels down the pole once they begin to move up towards the food. A squirrel that tries to climb up the pole for food will get a ride on the 'slinky' every time, taking them back down to the ground without harming them.
6. Place your bird feeder higher up
Another simple way to create a squirrel proof bird feeder is to place it approximately five feet off the ground. Research by Birds and Blooms has found that squirrels cannot jump more than five feet from the ground to reach a feeder on a post. The higher you place your feeder away from the ground (and away from anywhere that squirrels can climb), the more likely they are to eat the food.
7. Rollerfeeder bird feeders
This clever squirrel-proof bird feeder has an adjustable weight setting on the spring-operated perch, meaning that it will close as soon as a squirrel steps on it. With a hanger and plenty of space for seeds, you can keep your garden birds fed without worrying about squirrels coming to pinch it for themselves.
8. Squirrel guard cage
Deter squirrels without harming them thanks to this affordable bird feeder. It has plenty of space for tasty bird treats, as well as a yellow cage to stop squirrels from pinching any. Choose from a variety of sizes to find the right one for your outdoor space.
9. Squirrel stopper pole
A squirrel stopper pole makes it virtually impossible for the creatures to climb up as it will begin to bounce. All you need to do is build it in your garden and attach your bird food to each of the moving arms. While the birds will be able to reach the food, squirrels on the other hand will lose their grip.
Still struggling to keep squirrels out? Take a look at these top tips below...
1. Change up your bird food
While squirrels will eat most foods left in the garden, they aren't too keen on sunflower seeds. If you're having difficulty keeping them at bay, try putting sunflower seeds out for the birds instead.
2. Place your bird food wisely
As well as being able to jump high, squirrels are clever little creatures that know exactly where to find food. To avoid them eating it all, don't place your bird food too close to trees or large branches they can use as a launchpad. For the best results, find a suitable area around 10 feet away from any trees.
3. Feed them at a separate feeder
Much like birds, squirrels also look for food during the winter months. To keep them happy, why not give them their own feeding station? Need some inspiration? Last year people were building adorable miniature picnic tables for squirrels to sit at. Pop some of their favourite snacks on top and watch as they enjoy.
4. Hanging soap near your bird feeder
According to Craft Proquo, hanging a bar of Ivory soap in a sock near your bird feeder will help to keep squirrels at bay. It's thought the scent can help to repel squirrels and other rodents.
5. Use certain smells
Garlic, onions, peppermint, cinnamon, lemongrass, and cloves are among the smells squirrels don't like. To keep out of your garden, try placing some of these items around where your bird feeders are situated. Alternatively, you could place them into a spray bottle with some water and spritz hotspots instead.
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