Homemade Bird Feeders

Using inexpensive materials you probably have on hand, you can make great homemade feeders for birds and watch them enjoying the feast from your window.

Birds aren't picky about what holds their favorite food, especially during winter months. Using inexpensive materials you probably have on hand, you can make great feeders for birds and watch them enjoying the feast from your window.

Bird feeders don't have to be complicated. The easiest way to feed the birds is to scatter stale bread in your yard. You can also create a simple "feeder" by placing birdseed on a tray or plastic plate. This will attract many birds to your yard, but you will also provide for squirrels and other wildlife. Of course, squirrels are fun to watch as well.

An inexpensive feeder that will discourage squirrels can be made by tying a string on a pine cone, spreading the cone with peanut butter, then rolling it in birdseed and hanging it on a tree branch. You might also try threading a string through slices of bread or apple and hanging them from a tree. Suet can be served to the birds by placing it in a mesh bag that held onions or potatoes.



A two-liter soda bottle can be easily converted into a bird feeder. Leave the cap on, and turn it upside down. Cut out a few sections on three sides, leaving the bottom side attached. Bend the cut part outward for the birds to perch upon. Cut the top (the bottom of the bottle) off so that it can be easily filled with birdseed. Put holes in the bottle and string a piece of wire or thread through them. Fill your feeder, and hang it in a tree.

Aluminum soda cans can also be used as bird feeders. Simply make small slices toward the bottom of the can and bend them outward, rolling them under to avoid sharp edges. Fill the can with birdseed and hang it from the pull-tab. You could also thread a string through a margarine tub and hang it in a tree with birdseed.

Bird feeders do not have to be expensive, complicated, or even purchased in a store. Almost any small container can be modified to hang on a tree filled with birdseed or suet. Be creative, and stay away from materials that may injure birds. Remember that birds don't just eat birdseed, they also enjoy fruit and bread products. Before you toss out that rotten apple or stale loaf of bread, think about how it can benefit the hungry birds looking for food in a snow-covered landscape.

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