Choosing the right kind of bird feeder is one of the most important decisions any serious bird watcher can make. In addition to keeping your birds well-feed and healthy, the right bird feeder should ward off squirrels and other pests, while also keeping the feeder safe for birds to roost on.
When picking a bird feeder, you can either build your own or choose one from a store like Amazon or a local pet store. Many of the best premium bird feeders supply liquid nectar to hummingbirds and seed to wild birds such as cardinals finches, quail, sparrows, and other wild birds.
Top Bird Feeders
1) Chilipet Premium Bird Feeder
Bring a variety of beautiful birds to the yard with this attractive, easy to use feeder. Save money and enjoy feeding birds with this unit, which makes you deck a great area for birds of all types to come to. Bring nature right to your patio with this special design that is both affordable and creative.
2) Perky Pet Panorama Feeder
Holding up to 2 pounds of seed, this eye-catching, squirrel proof feeder holds a patented cap system made from sure-lock technology. This keeps pesky critters out of your seed at all times.
3) Brome Squirrel Buster Feeder
Featuring seed saving hassle free filling technology, this unit is simple to clean and it keeps the squirrels out, too. Using seed ventilation and a weight adjustable mechanism to close before squirrels can get in, the Squirrel Buster is highly rated and recommended.
4) Perky Pet Gazebo Feeder
Holding up to two and a quarter seed pounds, this twist lock unit will prevent lid spillage and keep seeds dry. Has a hanging steel cable and gazebo feeding style unit.
5) Perky Pet Holly Berry Gilded Feeder
Providing up to two pounds of seed, this circular perch unit lets birds feed from all angles while ensuring a patented cap system with sure-lock to prevent squirrels from getting in. Attractive, durable, and safe for birds to use.
Tips for Selecting a Feeder
Choosing a good good feeder depends on the type of birds you wish to attract, the species and breeds you hope to find, and the budget you have to spend. For many birdwatchers, seeing birds coming regularly to your yard is one of the most enriching experiences you can have. It takes a minimal amount of work to maintain and clean a feeder, as well as keeping it filled so birds have a frequent source of food.
When choosing a feeder, first look at the type of feeder you need — such as hopper, tube feeder, or squirrel proof feeders. You can build your own feeder or use a plan to design one, then assembling it from materials you pick up at a local hardware store or online. The best types of feeders will include durability, accessibility, and good reviews from users and other bird watchers.
Be sure to choose a black oil sunflower seed feeder that allows the shell to properly come out of the feeder. This will help keep your birds well-fed and happily able to continue to return to your feeder as the years go by. Often, cardinals and other wild birds will stay in your yard when they know they can go there to regularly receive food in a safe and healthy way.
Types of Feeders
Types of bird feeders include suet feeders, oriole feeders, hummingbird feeders, wild bird feeders, seed feeders, squirrel proof feeders, and more. There are many different feeders available on the market depending on your needs and goals for bird watching.
Some feeders have additional mechanisms to allow more birds to feed (additional ports) or anti-squirrel devices to make sure the seed is only accessible to birds. You can also find suet feeders and feeders specifically for ground birds like pheasants and quail.
How to Build Your Own Feeder
To build your own feeder, you will first need to find the best plan for your setup. For a tube or platform feeder, there are a number of plan types available through DIY feeder websites. There are also hummingbird feeder plans, or those for cardinals, wild birds, quail, sparrows, and pheasants.
To build your own feeder, first choose the right plan. Then, once you’ve selected a plan that works for you, acquire all the necessary materials from a local hardware store or online.
When you have all your materials, follow the plan to make sure you’ve crafted a durable, secure feeder that will continue to give your birds the necessary feeding platform for as long as possible. Test out the feeder’s durability on your own before placing it on a hanging or pole mount, so that you can be sure it will hold up under attacking squirrels or the weight of many birds at one time. Testing your feeder is a good idea no matter where you choose to place it, as many DIY feeders can have small cracks or problems that need to be fixed before placing them in your yard.
Bird Feeding Tips
The right kind of feeder for the birds you choose will determine what steps are necessary to keep your birds healthy and happy. For example, hummingbird feeders are best placed about fifteen to twenty feet from windows, and cannot have honey or raw sugar in its composition. You will need to use hummingbird-specific nectar and it must be changed three to five days.
For suet feeders, you will need to make sure that your wooden suet logs have specific drilled out logs for suet to be placed. High in fat and nutrients, suet is a great choice for helping birds stay fully-nourished in cold months.
For seed feeders, it is possible to craft a feeder that will use sunflower or black oil sunflower seeds, which have plenty of fat and are good for a number of different birds. However, if you plan to have finches coming to your feeder, you will need to add niger seed, as this is a popular choice for finches of all types.
A number of smaller finches also enjoy bird feeders specifically created to allow sunflower hearts and seeds to come out — as well as kernels that are the ideal size for their breed.