A guide to DIY bird feeders

The local ecosystem includes garden birds. It is simple to attract birds to your garden and doing so has certain benefits that include pest control, flower pollination, and weed control. A number of insects that may not be welcome in the garden include mosquitoes, aphids, spiders, and various others. Since many birds eat insects it makes sense to attract birds and thus encourage them to eat the natural insect resources that are around.

Birds, such as hummingbirds as well as others, sip nectar and are great pollinators of flowers in the garden. Increased pollination will create extra blooms, which adds more colour and thus attracts even more birds. Some birds like sparrows and finches consume seeds of weeds. This makes these birds suitable landscapers that can control some unwanted plants or weeds. One of the best ways to attract birds to the yard is with various types of feeders and water features. These items can be purchased at the local garden centre, but can be quite expensive.

Therefore, it makes sense to check out the following DIY bird feeders. They will attract birds to the garden, providing you with all the benefits of birds to the local ecosystem, but without the great expense of store bought products.

DIY Vintage Tea Cup Bird Feeder

This DIY project is simple, easy, and fun, giving chipped or just old vintage teacups a new life as a lovely bird feeder. Some good teacups are simply too good to throw away when they are chipped so why not use the items for something the birds will love.

The needed materials include:

  • Four teacups
  • 1 pack (250g) of lard/suet
  • 1 pack (750g) of wild bird seed
  • A large chopping board
  • A ribbon or string

Make sure the lard/suet is at room temperature so it will be easier to mould. The mixture that will be created will vary in amount depending upon the size and number of teacups being used. However, the ratio of the mixture should remain about two-thirds seed to one-third fat. Follow these steps:

  1. Create a good layer of seed by sprinkling them across the chopping board.
  2. Begin working the lard into the seed by kneading the lard in such a way the seed becomes incorporated into the lard. Add more seed throughout this process to create a mixture that has as much seed in it as possible (following the general ration given above).
  3. Since there are four teacups in this DIY bird feeder, cut the mixture of lard and seed into four equal parts. Take each part and press it into a teacup, do this for each of the four teacups. Make sure to leave a 5mm gap from the rim of the teacup so the birds have a bit of space to grab onto the teacups.
  4. Use the ribbon or string to tie to the handle; this will be used for hanging.
  5. Tie up the teacups in the chosen spot and watch for the birds.

DIY Orange Bird Feeder

This is the perfect DIY bird feeder project to get the kids involved. These feeders are charming, a hit with the kids, and very easy to make. They can be hung from trees and shrubs, making them easily viewed from windows. This allows everyone to watch as the birds come and feast upon the treats. The materials for this DIY bird feeder include:

  • An orange
  • Four pieces of twine, yarn, or string
  • Birdseed
  • A sharp knife.

Follow these steps to make this cute little DIY bird feeder:

  1. Cut the orange in half with a sharp knife and scoop out the flesh of the orange. This part of the project should be done by adults.
  2. Also with the knife, pierce four small holes on opposite sides about half an inch from the top edge of the orange half. Again, adults should complete this step.
  3. Get the kids involved with threading the string, which has already been cut into twenty-four inch lengths, through the holes. Simply thread the twine or string through a hole and then out of the opposite end. Use a second piece of twine to repeat this process through the remaining holes. This will create what looks like an "X" across the open part of the orange half.
  4. Gather the ends of the string together and tie a knot.
  5. Repeat these steps for the other half of the orange.
  6. Fill each half of the orange with birdseed and then hang each of them outside from a sturdy branch near a window where the birds can be watched without frightening them.

DIY Milk Carton Bird Feeder

This is another DIY bird feeder project that parents can do with kids, getting them excited about the natural world they so often ignore. The materials needed include:

  • A milk or juice carton
  • Scissors
  • Fishing wire
  • Birdseed.

Follow these steps to make this fun DIY bird feeder:

  1. Simply cut three equally sized openings, like windows, in three sides of the carton. Make sure you leave one to two inches of space from the carton's bottom.
  2. Poke two holes in the top of the carton.
  3. Put the fishing wire or some other type of sturdy string through the two holes as a way to tie the DIY bird feeder to a tree branch or porch area.
  4. Fill the carton with birdseed up to the window openings.
  5. Hang the DIY milk carton bird feeder in a spot that can be safely viewed without scaring the birds away.

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