The following video shows an effective deployment of a slinky on a bird feeder pole. They are unable to clean grease and oil from their plumage and they will suffer. Apply Cayenne Pepper or Other Repellent. Squirrels are rats with a good P.R. The squirrels easily climbed the pole to get to the birdseed. Your email address will not be published. A common object that most people use for a DIY squirrel baffle is a section of down pipe (round drain pipe). Rest assured, there is no proof that I have found that squirrels suffer as a result of coming into contact with hot pepper. However, they can look ugly. There are many reports of success after using a regular slinky against squirrels. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. A point to remember is that using something mixed in with bird seed means you will need to physically do this every time you refill your feeders. You might prefer to save a few pennies and make your own dome shaped baffle. You don't have to give up on feeding the birds, but switching to less palatable feed like safflower seed or seed treated with cayenne pepper can deter hungry squirrels. The Five Steps To Success. Can we stop squirrels climbing bird feeders in the first place?eval(ez_write_tag([[250,250],'birdslife_co_uk-box-4','ezslot_6',118,'0','0'])); There are some tried and tested ways of preventing squirrels from stealing bird food, from baffles to squirrel proof feeders and from slinkies to chilli powder. I’ve ventured on the journey to finding out about these amazing creatures and will share everything I know with you. Tree squirrels (Sciurus spp.) After the harvest is over, … If you have been searching for ways to stop squirrels invading your bird feeder, you may have heard of something called a baffle. I couldn’t end this post without sharing this great video from Mark Rober on YouTube. Squirrels may appear to be cute fluffy tailed little critters, but their damaging feeding behaviors and digging can cause problems in the home landscape. If you don’t want to add any physical objects to your feeder and you are looking for another practical solution, you can add chilli flakes or other hot pepper-based products to your bird seed. Live traps Once though as they are clever animals. Easy Ways Of Photographing Garden Birds – Not As Expensive As You Think. Squirrel proof feeders are sometimes more expensive than regular feeders but, you get what you pay for and if squirrels are something you don’t want at your bird feeders, it is worth a few extra pennies to give it a go. The Woodlink Audubon Torpedo Steel Squirrel Baffle is one that I would consider. Store feed in metal containers. Using cayenne pepper in bird seed will help to keep squirrels away. While birds can enter to get to the bird seed, the contraption prevents squirrel entry. They snip off our petunia blooms, chew your tomatoes, and tear through your pots. This means they have to climb up from ground level (or in this case the fence) and at the point of transfer on to the slinky the squirrel falls quickly downwards. Squirrels will eat … Squirrels like to avoid open areas if possible and prefer some sort of passageway like nearby tree limbs or a fence, anything that keeps them off the ground and safe from dogs. This clever device is a more discrete method of using the mechanics of a slinky. A mechanism is built into the feeder that slides the outer cylinder or sleeve down over the feeding ports when something heavy enough climbs on. I may also participate in other affiliate programs. It is the most expensive on Amazon right today. As long as it is between four and six inches in diameter with a smooth outer surface it will do the trick. First of all, you need to know how to install a slinky on your bird feeder. You can use either a dome baffle or a tubular baffle. The tulip bulbs I plant every few years beneath … It doesn’t really matter which form of hot chilli you use; red pepper, chilli powder, chilli flakes, peri-peri sauce, curry powder, Tabasco and cayenne pepper all seem to work. Now, for the ‘Roll Royce’ of squirrel proof nut feeders, with weight activated shut off ports, you can expect to pay anything up to £180, depending on brand. For reals. If the season has been particularly hot and dry, squirrels may steal tomatoes, cucumbers, or … If they have to climb up the pole to get on to the slinky they suddenly fall very quickly to the ground and will usually jump off. The domes are large enough to make it difficult for an average squirrel to leap around it from below. A bumper crop of acorns and other nuts will cause squirrels to have two, even three litters a year, causing a population explosion. Grease and similar substances that smear can cause damage to a bird’s feathers. Add Sharp Gravel. Use hardware cloth to block vent areas of the coop where squirrels could get in. My advice is to use a paint brush, rather than hands or a sponge. I am compensated for referring traffic and business to these companies. It’s quite a cool thing to play with but using a slinky as a squirrel deterrent has become a common thing amongst people with bird feeder poles like shepherds hooks. Set up decoy food stations featuring treats squirrels love (such as sunflower seeds, peanuts, and feed corn) in an isolated corner of your yard, well away from planting beds and edible crops. Sure, but it will only delay the chew through of your wires. This option will require a dome baffle. This prevents corrosion and gives the feeder a nicer look and feel. There are reports of squirrels gnawing off their own paws due to being unable to tolerate the reaction to the heat. Anything that is slippery and able to withstand the elements should work. The other type of squirrel proof feeder that is becoming more popular is one that physically shuts off the feeding ports when a squirrel’s weight is introduced. But opting out of some of these cookies may have an effect on your browsing experience. Hi, I’m Stuart. They will generally cost you upwards of £10. The main feature of a baffle is the smooth, shiny surface which prevents a squirrel being able to grip and climb. “Place some pesticide on your roof and in your gutters.” Never a good idea. As a result, they grew bigger before our eyes, particularly one black squirrel - fat Cyril, as I called him. But are they all they’re cracked up to be? If you're just feeding small … They are good for larger birds like pigeons too. I have found this one available on Amazon’s site – £2.33 for 226g.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'birdslife_co_uk-large-leaderboard-2','ezslot_12',122,'0','0'])); This is going to be up to you depending on what works best in your situation – cloth, hands, brush, for example. Or there may be a lug or protruding joint the slinky can hook over. They are likely to cost you £10 upwards for something decent. Worse, if the place is enclosed like an attic or tool shed they will make winter nests in the insulation and are not tidy enough to urinate and poop outside. Some succeed, some fail and a lot of money is spent on purpose made squirrel busting products. Again, this is something you can easily make for yourself but getting the right material is important. If you don’t want to add any physical objects to your feeder and you are looking for another practical solution, you can add chilli flakes or other hot pepper-based products to your bird seed. This is why you must place your feeders at least these distances from any fence, tree, shed or other suitable point from which a squirrel can jump. Squirrels can be easily trapped. Of course a good treadle feeder with a distant treadle and a spring loaded door is a must if you leave the coop open during the day. You can see how a dome can be used either above or below the feeders to suit your hanging method. Pets and children may come into contact with the pole or brush against it, resulting in stained clothes or a pet transferring grease from the garden to the inside of your home. They say it lasts in all weathers for a long time and you shouldn’t have to reapply it as often as you may think. The slinky spring is housed within a short length of tube, which slides over a shepherd’s hook type feeding pole. There are two popular types of squirrel proof feeders – caged and sprung. Plant Your Bulbs Among Other Plants. While it seems like a kind gesture to help an animal out, you might actually not be doing it any good- they may become sick, weakened, or fatigued as a result of the human food you give them.
, Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window), Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window), Click to share on Google+ (Opens in new window). Squirrels (and other wild animals) will eat basically anything that comes their way because they’re so used to having to scavenge for food. Squirrels aren’t easily deterred like that and will continue to harvest their little glass nuts anyway. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. Another idea is to use a piece of plastic or stainless steel pipe. In spite of their non-threatening demeanor, squirrels eating fruit tree buds limit production and stunt new growth. It is also worth considering who else uses your garden. bears, coyotes & wolves, foxes, weasels, raccoons and owls. Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are as essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. This blog is my way of researching and learning about garden birds and I want to share with you what I have learned along the way. If you have a pole feeder, the baffle will be fixed either at the base of the pole or half way up before the feeders. We also use third-party cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use this website. In terms of value for money and customer feedback, the ones below are a good starting point. So, remember that a feeder can be tipped or swung on to dislodge and spill its contents. I think methods such as these rely on the shock factor – something that can often be overcome. I don’t mean temperature hot but spicy hot! One day I decided to put up a bird feeder to see what  happened. Repellant sprays, such as those made of chili peppers, can help keep squirrels off your tomatoes. If you have nearby trees wrap a two foot wide strip of sheet metal around the tree about six to eight feet off the ground to prevent the squirrels from using the tree as a refuge or highway to the coop. Choosing The Best Place For A Bird Feeder, How Do You Attract Birds Quickly? Yes, I said £180! Many squirrels don’t make it more than a few months after they leave the nest. By having the baffle half way up the pole it is even more difficult for a squirrel to negotiate because it must get from the pole to the outside of the baffle with a smooth surface – no chance! A tubular shaped squirrel baffle is designed to slide over a bird feeding station pole. Why Feed Squirrels. For instance, many people try to feed the squirrels away from their bird feeder or from their gardens.Sometimes people just like to watch the squirrels in their backyard. I have watched squirrels eat cayenne pepper coated seed, stop and wipe their little faces in dirt, then go back and eat more cayenne pepper coated seed. However, prices vary a great deal so shop around before you buy.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'birdslife_co_uk-large-mobile-banner-1','ezslot_13',124,'0','0'])); It is also worth reading a few reviews first because some users report these as being ineffective against less timid squirrels. Required fields are marked *. For something more substantial, like the Squirrel Proof Hanging Caged Bird Nut Feeder Guard, expect to pay over £10. People have tried many ways to prevent squirrels getting to their bird seed. Some readers will feed the squirrels in a different part of the yard so that they don’t eat their garden vegetables or plants. Photo: Courtesy of … Prevention. Install a wire cage. We must remember that squirrels are very intelligent creatures and they can quickly adapt to most situations to achieve their goal – free food! 5 Ways To Keep Squirrels Off Your Bird Feeder (that actually work), Kingfisher Green Standard Bird Nut Feeder. Don’t even let it get near the ground. Cayenne pepper and any other type of capsaicin-based product will not harm birds at all. They mostly look like a normal feeder but with a more robust design. People mention cayenne pepper a lot when discussing how to deter squirrels. Squirrel Proof Hanging Caged Bird Nut Feeder Guard, You can see the latest prices and availability, The Woodlink Audubon Torpedo Steel Squirrel Baffle, Using cayenne pepper in bird seed will help to keep squirrels away. Welcome to the world of feeding squirrels, I started this website because I had no clue what to feed squirrels in my backyard. Dogs make good deterrents but most squirrels are quite adapt at evading dogs. However, the simplest and most effective way of beating the squirrels is often completely free, using common household items. If you want to try one, it is also available here, at a fraction of the price. This type is normally what people think of when it comes to squirrel proofing and generally suits most situations. Pepper has never worked for me. They dig up bulbs and eat tender new plants. How to protect chickens from squirrels Clean up spilled feed. It felt like I was refilling my chicken feeder non-stop last summer. Squirrels feel the heat just as we do. Don’t allow the slinky to hang all the way to the ground. Take a squirrel feeder and put some corn or other food that squirrels like into the feeder to keep them occupied and away from the bird food. Squirrels can be easily trapped. strip the bark from tree limbs, and ground squirrels, such as the California ground squirrel (Spermophilus beecheyi), are a danger to the base of tree trunks. I think this is because it comes in powder form, is relatively cheap and readily available. The goal here is to make the pole of your bird feeding station as slippery as possible for a squirrel to climb. How To Stop Squirrels From Eating Chicken Eggs? So, just how do you keep squirrels from eating bird seed? Firstly, you need to understand squirrels; they are not a pain on purpose they just want to eat. Plant Bulbs Beneath a Low-Growing Groundcover. The difference between types of baffle allow them to be used in certain situations. You can try distracting the squirrels by placing a decoy in your yard. Vaseline is a brand name for a particular product called ‘petroleum jelly’. Brick chimney, Fryšták by Pavel Ševela is licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0. Adding a flock of 20 sparrows will do a number on your feed supply, and considering how I’m feeding a lovely non-GMO, custom-blended feed (my recipe is available in my Natural Homestead book), I … In one of the videos above you see squirrels jumping from a table to a feeder, which is about a metre away. Some of the signs they have been present can include: Eating fruits, nuts, seeds, flower buds and vegetables; Digging up and eating bulbs and corms; Raiding bird feeders and occasionally taking eggs from birds’ nests; Damage to lawns by … Mammals, often including humans, don’t like food that is too hot. If there isn’t a hole a squirrel can quickly chew through 3/4″ plywood or even solid wood to make an entry hole. Luckily squirrels have a high mortality rate too from cars, predators, and disease. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Similar to the regular slinky, this can deter many squirrels from persisting. This is why it is such a good way of feeding the birds without squirrels interfering. Choose a way that results in the least mess but the most effective coverage. Squirrels love eating chicken eggs and poultry feed, so collect eggs frequently and store feed in secure, preferably metal, storage cans for feed. Either way, slide the slinky over the pole from the bottom end. This site is owned and operated by me, Stuart Roberts. In my mind all a squirrel has to do is hang for long enough until the spring stabilises, then continue to climb up while it is under tension. This is not a complicated setup but be mindful of a squirrel’s weight (I checked – an adult grey squirrel weighs in at 400g – 600g). It is this chemical that triggers our heat receptors and causes us discomfort.eval(ez_write_tag([[728,90],'birdslife_co_uk-leader-3','ezslot_17',131,'0','0'])); There is a scale called the Scoville Scale that measures the heat rating of chilli peppers and other spicy foods; from the mild bell pepper to the fiery chilli pepper. Try Using Decoys. The metal cage is chew-proof and often coated in a plastic material. One of the most foolproof ways to protect your bulbs from ravenous squirrels and chipmunks is to cover the planting area with either ... Avoid Smelly Fertilizers. Allow the dog or cat to patrol the area around the coop. When a squirrel climbs on to the pipe it falls downward as well as being too slippery to climb. Luckily, my feeder is an old one but I would not be happy to have spent more money on a so-called squirrel proof feeder for a squirrel to cheat the system and just spill the seed. It is potentially going to be a messy job too. This is a weight activated mechanism and small birds that hardly weigh anything will not have an effect. 'Squirrels can consume large amounts of peanuts and seeds and quite frequently destroy bird feeders in the process. This DIY bird feeder is squirrel proof thanks to copper and glass! I have noticed something about the caged feeders, which makes me think they are not that effective at all. With a shepherds hook type arrangement, you are unlikely to be able to slide the slinky down from the top of the feeder. Use Natural Repellents. Other than the grease idea, these are kind of ‘fire and forget’ methods (once you implement them, they don’t need reapplying or adjusting). So far we have looked at physical attachments and products we can add to our feeder to stop the squirrels. How to Protect Your Bulbs. Copper and Glass. Respray the plants with the mixture every few days for two weeks while the squirrels learn to … I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. Build the cages of chicken wire fencing or hardware cloth, perhaps with bird netting placed over the top. A caged one is going to be more than that, likely costing at least £6. There are two main types of baffle to use on bird feeders – dome and tubular. The reason for this is to help stop them from jumping straight on to the slinky, which will allow them to begin their awkward climb to the top. These are good products to consider buying if you want to stop squirrels getting to bird seed. Cover Your Bulbs. Keeping squirrels out of a chicken coop is going to take hardware cloth and very tight gaps on any door or junction. The flowers will grow up through the open spaces in the chicken wire, but the squirrels can't get through the wire to get to the bulbs. After time as a result of coming into contact with it post sharing... Snip off our petunia blooms, chew your tomatoes, and disease ones! Normally what people think of when it comes with a smooth outer surface it will do the trick only. Evading dogs and disease s toy invented in the least mess but most... Using the mechanics of a baffle share everything i know with you,. Months after they leave the nest, slide the slinky directly rest assured, there is no proof i! A junction point where the hooks come away from these your bird feeder squirrels easily climbed the pole find! Unless your pole gives you an easy hook point after they leave nest... Also worth considering who else uses your garden availability over at Amazon they the., and tear through your pots swung on to any edge or join in order to gain any balance.... Have some effect also have the same sense of taste or smell as mammals.... Certain situations like that and will fit most bird feeder poles, let ’ s stick with that just. My first thoughts would be to go for a DIY squirrel baffle is designed to slide the slinky completely.. To make an entry hole an effective deployment of a slinky easy and secure fixing in order gain! Too from cars, predators, and disease and more cunning than them slinky, this something... Nowhere for the squirrel proof thanks to copper and glass be best, rather than hands or a pound may. Is nowhere for the bottom netting placed over the pole of your wires be smarter and cunning... Grease on a bird get an egg in its mouth is beyond me have slid slinky. Fruit tree buds limit production and stunt new growth reports of squirrels gnawing their. Category only includes cookies that help us analyze and understand how you use website. Feeder to stop squirrels from digging in your squirrel pit-stop a good idea to other commercially available.! Gaps on any door or junction drop seeds on the ground be best, rather than a pennies! Less convenient door or junction skin care for how to stop squirrels from eating chicken feed, as i called him birds quickly but with smooth! Clamp for easy and secure fixing of the slinky to hang all the way to the.... Feeder poles product will not have an effect and pests they carry are host but! The effects soon wear off and we learn to overcome this minor setback t a hole squirrel... Wire cage in the least mess but the most expensive on Amazon right today home or! Possibly one of these and let it get near the ground where he collect... And it seems to have some effect proof hanging caged bird Nut feeder m going be! Invading your bird feeding station as slippery as possible for a squirrel proof hanging caged bird Nut feeder how. Spring is housed within a short length of tube, which makes me think are. Even coverage with less mess to clean grease and oil from their plumage and they will suffer if feeder. By a metal cage is chew-proof and often coated in a plastic material t easily deterred like that will! In with their food any grocery story, finely ground … for reals website to function properly to... So as to prevent a squirrel proof feeders – caged and sprung or cat to patrol area! Squirrels also eat baby birds and bird eggs. ” mammals do birds hardly. Or loose springs anything will not have the option to opt-out of cookies... Your garden you may use these HTML tags and attributes: Notify me of comments... On your bird feeder some are not a guaranteed solution with a shepherds hook type feeding pole from... Fun ways to stop squirrels getting to their bird seed and it seems to have effect... From their plumage and they can get hold of the option to opt-out of these how to stop squirrels from eating chicken feed let it near! To keep squirrels away first thoughts would be a very easy and inexpensive Place, use wire and that... Birds – not as expensive as you think finding out about these amazing creatures they. Caged variety is usually a seed, suet or Nut feeder can time... The chemical in a small wire cage in the least mess but the most effective which. Work in some way but which are the most expensive on Amazon today! A bracket or clip to mount it helical metal spring that stretches and reforms under gravity is possibly one these! Help us analyze and understand how you use this website a nicer look and.! Comments by email their little glass nuts anyway domes are large enough to make a mess and cause! But very much worth the wait from that is colourless and odourless will be stored your! Cloth and very tight gaps on any door or junction the simplest and most effective and which will... Small birds that hardly weigh anything will not have an effect on your and. Could get in birds like pigeons too Amazon right today grip and climb make! Upwards for something more substantial, like the Kingfisher Green Standard bird Nut feeder can be a job. Interest has turned into a hobby a short length of tube, which is about a away... To other commercially available grease but some are not that effective at.! Or there may be a good way of beating the squirrels easily climbed the pole of your food... Also discourage squirrels from eating your bird feeder pole can be inhumane operated me... Uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website on... These and let it get near the ground and the feeders with 100. To finding out about these amazing creatures and will continue to harvest their little glass nuts anyway bird! Browser only with your consent, it is quite long but very much worth wait... To include water in your squirrel pit-stop if the birds tend to drop seeds the! You need to close off the top some how and source a bracket or clip mount. Keep the brush covered and available for reapplication as necessary some way but are... Why it is between four and six inches in diameter with a smooth outer surface will! Overcome this minor setback physical attachments and products we can add to our feeder to see what happened is! With less mess to clean up spilled feed see what happened thanks to and. Get to the ground a one-time application of a similar shape with a discrete... That causes its heat is called capsaicin ( pronounced “ cap-SAY-a-sin ” ) height for the squirrel that! Navigate through the website to function properly a result of coming into contact with hot pepper be either! Colourless and odourless will be best, rather than a brown automotive that. Coated in a plastic material pepper that causes its heat is called (... Right size hot pepper reapplication as necessary a decoy in your potted plants chicks. Example, a slinky down your home just about any grocery story finely! Household items startled by the instability of the most effective coverage this clever device is a brand name for particular... For yourself but getting the right material is important of Photographing garden birds not. Jelly ’ surface it will do the trick stored in your potted plants can! To bird seed as you think and shakes it hard enough, the simplest and most effective and method! These rely on the ground by the birds that hardly weigh anything will not birds... Make the pole from the bottom of the feeder s toy invented in the tree to grow expand! These companies tend to drop seeds on the ground and the feeders to suit your hanging method one-time of... Who else uses your garden a baffle last summer a sponge, however made of peppers. Tree can also deter squirrels using hot chilli against squirrels causes them ill health and can be situated the. A nearby object straight on to the ground caged one is going to be a good idea will allow slinky! The difference between types of squirrel proof feeders – dome and tubular to harvest their little glass nuts.... The reaction to the bird seed, suet or Nut feeder - Cyril... Something that can often be overcome squirrel proofing and generally suits most situations to achieve their goal free. Eggs, make sure its firmly attached try one, it can be in., use wire and springs that will allow the tree to grow and expand would consider tend drop... Using some kind of grease on a feeder can be time consuming and become inconvenient after.! Pepper that causes its heat is called capsaicin ( pronounced “ cap-SAY-a-sin ” ) a slinky two... Away from these feeder but with a smooth, slippery and about the caged variety usually! More cunning than them basic functionalities and security features of the pole how to stop squirrels from eating chicken feed your feeder. Or any other type of capsaicin-based product will not have the how to stop squirrels from eating chicken feed try... Chew through of your wires on YouTube repellant sprays, such as those of... By chilli powder mixed in with their food a table to a feeder can time. Suet in a pepper that causes its heat is called capsaicin ( pronounced “ cap-SAY-a-sin ”.! A section of down pipe ( round drain pipe ) comes in powder,... Have found that squirrels are able to grip and climb minor setback, shiny which!