Building bird feeders is an activity that combines creativity, craftsmanship, and a love for our little feathered friends. Watching birds in your backyard can be a fun and fascinating experience for both kids and adults alike. Not only does it offer an opportunity to connect with nature, but it also provides a valuable learning experience.
We’re exploring a variety of fun and easy bird feeders that kids can make themselves. We’re also sharing some handy tips and hacks to enhance your bird feeding experience. So, gather your supplies and get ready for an exciting adventure that will attract colorful visitors to your yard!
12 Bird Feeder Tips and Hacks
While the specific supplies may depend on your bird feeder design, here are some essential items to have on hand as well as some helpful tips and hacks:
- Birdseed – To attract a wider variety of birds, use different types of birdseed, such as sunflower seeds, millet, or cracked corn. Check the label and choose a high-quality mix suitable for the birds in your area. Also, consider nectar to attract a diverse range of species throughout the year.
- Peanut Butter – Peanut butter isn’t just for sandwiches. It’s also an excellent binding agent for seed-covered feeders.
- Twine or String – Twine or string will come in handy when it’s time to hang or suspend your bird feeder.
- Timing – Birds are most active in the early morning and late afternoon. Ensure your feeders are stocked during these times for optimal bird watching opportunities.
- Water Source – Birds need water for drinking and bathing, so having a birdbath or shallow dish nearby can attract even more feathered visitors to your yard.
- Craft Knife or Scissors – Use a sharp craft knife or pair of craft scissors to cut openings or shapes in containers.
- Location – Make sure to place your bird feeder in a quiet and safe spot, away from potential predators, such as cats. Also, ensure they are easily accessible for refilling and cleaning.
- Paint or Markers – Gather a variety of paint or markers to add color and creativity to your feeders. Opt for waterproof paint or markers to ensure your feeder can withstand outdoor elements.
- Wooden Skewers or Sticks – Use wooden skewers or sticks from your yard to help create a variety of perches for your bird feeder.
- Recyclable Materials – Take advantage of items you have around your home, such as empty toilet paper rolls, milk cartons, and plastic bottles to create eco-friendly feeders.
- Cleanliness – Make sure to regularly clean your bird feeders to prevent the spread of diseases. Wash them with warm, soapy water, rinse thoroughly, and allow them to dry completely before refilling.
- Observation – Encourage children to observe and identify the birds that visit their feeders. Have them keep a journal or create a bird spotting checklist to record sightings and learn more about each species.
12 Bird Feeders Kids Can Make
- Toilet Paper Roll Bird Feeder – Start by spreading a generous layer of peanut butter over the outer surface of a toilet paper roll. Then, roll it in birdseed, making sure to cover the entire surface. Finally, thread a string or pipe cleaner through the roll, creating a loop for hanging.
- Fruit Kabob Feeder – You’ll need a wooden skewer or sturdy stick, a selection of fresh fruits (apple slices, orange wedges, grapes), and twine or string. Slide the fruit pieces onto the skewer in an alternating pattern, creating a colorful and enticing display. To prevent the fruit from drying out too quickly, soak it in water for a few minutes before assembling the kabob feeder.
- Milk Carton Bird Feeder – Cut a rectangular opening on one side of a paper milk carton, leaving enough space for the birds to access the seeds. Decorate the carton with colorful designs using the paint or markers. Next, poke a hole near the top of the carton and insert the wooden dowel or stick to act as a perch for the birds. Finally, thread a piece of string through the hole and tie it securely for hanging.
- Pinecone Bird Feeder – Collect large pinecones and tie a string around the top for hanging. Spread peanut butter or vegetable shortening on the pinecone, then roll it in birdseed until fully coated. Hang the pinecone feeder from a tree branch or hook.
- Bagel Bird Feeder – Take a stale bagel and spread a layer of peanut butter or cream cheese on both sides. Then press birdseed onto the bagel until it sticks. Finally, thread a string through the hole in the center of the bagel and hang it outside for the birds to enjoy.
- Cookie Cutter Bird Feeder – Mix birdseed with powdered gelatin or peanut butter until it forms a sticky mixture. Place a cookie cutter on a tray lined with parchment paper and fill it with the seed mixture. Then, press it down firmly and remove the cookie cutter. Allow the birdseed shape to dry and harden before attaching a string for hanging.
- Orange Cup Feeder – Cut a large orange in half and scoop out the fruit. Pierce small holes near the rim of each half and thread twine or string through the holes, tying knots to secure them. Finally, fill the orange cups with birdseed and hang them from a tree branch.
- Cereal Box Bird Feeder – Take an empty cereal box and cut out a large rectangular opening on one side. Attach a wooden dowel or stick horizontally through the box, positioning it near the bottom as a perch. Decorate the box with colorful markers or paint, then fill it with birdseed. Hang the feeder by threading a string through the top of the box.
- Egg Carton Feeder – Cut the lid off a cardboard egg carton and poke small holes in the bottom of each cup. Fill each cup with birdseed and attach a string to the top of the carton for hanging.
- Mason Jar Feeder – Clean and dry a small mason jar. Remove the lid and place it upside down on a surface. Spread birdseed on top of the lid and glue a wooden dowel vertically in the center. Screw the jar back onto the lid, creating a seed dispenser. Finally, attach a string or wire around the jar for hanging.
- Recycled Bottle Feeder – Take a clean plastic bottle with a screw-on cap. Cut small holes near the base of the bottle, large enough for birds to access the seeds. Fill the bottle with birdseed, screw the cap back on, and attach a string or wire to the neck of the bottle for hanging.
- Popsicle Stick Feeder – Line up popsicle sticks vertically, gluing them together to create a square or rectangular frame. Attach a popsicle stick as a perch at the bottom. Fill the frame with a mixture of birdseed and peanut butter, pressing it down firmly. Allow it to dry before hanging it up.
Creating bird feeders is not only a fun and engaging activity for kids, but also a wonderful way to foster a love for nature and wildlife. By providing nourishment and a welcoming space for birds, children can experience the joy of watching these beautiful creatures up close. With this list of easy-to-make bird feeders kids can make, you can let your creativity take flight!
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