Follow our helpful tips to keep squirrels away from your bird feeders.
You put up bird feeders to attract your feathered friends. However, your bird seed will likely attract another creature: squirrels. These pesky creatures think you put out that store-bought seed for them. Keep the bushy-tailed bandits off your bird feeders with a few of our helpful tips.
Find the Right Feeder Spot
Squirrels can jump up to six feet in the air. Make sure feeders are placed at least 12 to 15 feet from any surface a squirrel can jump from, such as a tree, shrub or house. If your squirrels can still jump and reach the feeders, you may have to move it even further.
Use a Squirrel Baffle
A squirrel baffle is used to keep squirrels off of bird feeders. There are two types of squirrel baffles. The first is a domed wrap-around baffle that can either go on top of a bird feeder, or be wrapped around a feeder pole. The second kind if a pipe baffle, which is mounted on a bird feeder pole.
Hang feeders on the bird feeder pole at least five feet off of the ground. To hang multiple feeders, use a pole extension. Place the pipe baffle below the feeders. This will prevent gray and red squirrels from climbing the pole to reach the seed.
Use a squirrel-proof bird feeder in any situation where there are gray squirrels. It lets small birds, such as chickadees, titmice, nuthatches, cardinals and finches feed, but excludes gray squirrels. Even if gray squirrels get on the feeder, they can’t get inside the cage to access the seed. This feeder is ideal for decks, trees, and hanging close to houses.
Use Safflower Seed
One of the easiest ways to dissuade a squirrel from your bird feeders is to serve something they won’t want to eat. Try switching to a seed that squirrels don’t like, such as safflower seed. While the squirrels won’t like it, you’ll still be able to attract plenty of birds. Cardinals, chickadees, nuthatches, house finches and mourning doves all enjoy safflower seed.
Give the Squirrels Their Own Food
Finally, divert squirrels from bird feeders by providing them with their own feeders and squirrel toys. Specialized squirrel feeders are unique and attractively designed accessories that can hold whole ears of corn. The feeders give squirrels their own yummy treat and helps keep them off the bird feeders.