Saturday, January 22, 2011

Birdfeeder FAIL!

I have more than a few squirrels in my neighborhood and was intrigued when I saw an article online about building a $10 birdfeeder that would keep Rocky the Squirrel away.

I went ahead and built it (mainly out of PVC pipe)  and strung it up from a tree in mid-November.  It looked funny but what the heck, if it works that's fine with me.  The neat design uses zip-ties as the perch:  strong enough to hold a small bird but not enough to support the weight of a squirrel.  It's four feet long, and slippery, making it impossible for Rocky to slide down if he/she wants a shot at the holes where the seed is dispensed. 

The good news is that Rocky (and friends) couldn't get close to the bird seed, despite trying many times with all kinds of gymnastic moves.   The bad news is that the birds never got interested in the feeder!  I was encouraged when I saw a bird or two on the feeder the very first day but that's been about it, as far as I've ever seen.  At first I thought it was our warm November and December that was keeping the birds disinterested, and that they would flock to the feeder as soon as the first cold snap or snow storm came though.  Nope.  A few of those came and went with no visible signs of birdfeeding activity.   Oh, and I have plenty of birds around.  They arrive promptly if I put seed on the ground. 

It will be coming down soon, two months after going up.  I can only conclude that this design works for some parts of the country but not mine.


lalapapawawa said...

Before removing it, I would suggest replacing the zip tie with something a tiny bit stronger, like a straight twig.
I can't think of a bird, even chickadees, that would be THAT light. Besides, the zipline isn't round, which most branches are.
The rest of the design looks solid.

Peter said...

Ok, I'll give that a try. I should note that the zip-ties are the heavy duty types and that they held the few bird visitors that I did see. Will report back with the results!