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Keeping Squirrels Away From Your Bird Feeders

Posted by Linda Pittman on

squirrel proof double suet feederMost discussions about birds will also end up talking about squirrels and how to stop them. Squirrels are coming out more, now that itmight be getting warmer.  They are skinny and needing a good meal.  A squirrel can eat its weight in seeds in a week, to say nothing about what they store somewhere else. They are most active in warm weather the first few hours after sunrise, while in winter around noon. They can jump 6 feet straight up, 8 feet sideways and run up to 20 mph. So stopping squirrels is no easy task.
This war is best won on multiple fronts, with multiple feeders, sometimes even by giving them their own feeder. A hanging feeder will need a baffle that is at least 1/3 larger that the feeder it is guarding, or a squirrel will just bounce it sideways and grab hold somewhere, in an entertaining game. The bottom of the feeder needs to be at least 4 1/2 feet off the ground and 8 feet away from a launching spot to the side to be effective. A pole mounted feeder needs to have the bottom of the baffle at least 4 1/2 feet up the pole, and 8 feet from a sideways launching spot. If your feeder locations do not have that clearance, you can try a caged feeder, or a squirrel proof feeder where the weight of the squirrel on the perch pulls down the guard and shuts off access to the feed. They should be made of metal chew-proof material. The latter is pricier and more complex, but have a great success rate. Check out our Squirrel Proof Feeders page. Good Luck!

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