DIY BIRD FEEDERS: Easy, Cheap, and Fun for Kids & Adults!
I recently moved into a new apartment near a nature area with lots of trees. This means I now have lots and lots of birdy neighbors! First thing I wanted to do when I moved in was buy a bird feeder. Unfortunately, bird feeders cost money, and spare change just isn’t something a young, married college student has much of. Plan two: have fun making as many feeders as possible in as many creative, cheap, and fun ways that I can!
After browsing the net, I’ve found some great ideas that I can’t resist sharing:
Fun with Paint
I just love this bird feeder idea! It’s simple, you probably already own all the supplies (old can, ribbon, stick, hot glue, paint), and there’s a bunch of ways to personalize each one you make.
Any Fruit in Your Kitchen?
I can’t wait to string up this type of feeder in one of the trees outside my window. I need to eat one of the oranges in my kitchen, asap! All you need is string, but if you’d like to get a bit fancier, get some sticks from the yard or cut some dowels in order to provide birds a perch. Easier still, you could skip digging out the fruit and drying the peel and just cut the fruit (like orange, cantaloupe, grapefruit, etc) in half and hang it as is – birds will eat the fruit right out of the peel.
Adorable Teacup Feeders!
I love this idea because 1. it’s really cute, and 2. it’s cheap: use old unwanted china you already own or visit a thrift store/yard sale and get a few teacups for super-de-duper cheap. There are so many different ways to make one of these feeders! You can even create a part bath, part feeder like the one pictured in the bottom-middle above.
Simple, Yet Classy … And Kid-Friendly!
These feeders are extremely simple but still have some class. All you need is wire! You can create spirals of wire to stuff food or nesting material into, or you can stick food straight onto the wire (such as the cheerios cereal feeder above). And, as the Little Miss Hypothesis blog points out, this is a cheap, no-peanut-butter idea (allergies) that is simple enough for kids to do (especially if you use pipe cleaners instead of wire), making it a great classroom activity! Oh, and these also make great gifts and party favors too.
Classic Peanut Butter Feeders
Can’t have a post about DIY bird feeders without including the classic roll-something-in-peanut-butter-and-bird-seed feeder! You can smear peanut butter and bird seed on practically anything, even sticks (left picture) and toilet paper rolls (right two photos). In fact, you can even smear peanut butter right on the trunk and branches of trees (we do this at the wildlife rehabilitation center I work at – great enrichment for the northern flickers we care for). No feeder needed!
Recycle Those Old Containers
These feeders are a great way to recycle those plastic containers and enjoy birdwatching at the same time!
Even More Ideas that I Love:
And Last But Not Least: Slinky Bird Feeder!
I only have two weeks before the fall semester starts. If I’m going to get bird feeders up, I’d better get to creating!