Make a bird feeder for your garden

Make a Bird Feeder for your garden

These are great projects you can do with your children and a great way to get them interested in bird watching. They’re also very cheap, great fun, and take little time to complete.

Table

Attach a piece of board in a position well out of reach of cats – for example you could nail it to a tree branch. A metal sheath around the trunk below will prevent cats climbing up.

Hammer some nails into the board sticking up a few centimetres to use to secure bits of food to the table. Place pieces of bread and old fruit (apples, grapefruit cut in half, etc) on the nails for the birds to eat. Some birds also like to eat fat - dripping works well.

Automatic feeder

Sit a 1 Litre plastic milk container in a shallow dish or saucer. Make 2-3 very small holes ½ a centimetre from the bottom of the bottle – this will allow sugar solution to come out of the bottle up to the height of the holes.

To make sugar solution, dissolve ½ a cup of sugar in 1L of warm water. Fill the bottle of your automatic feeder and screw the lid back on tightly. Place the feeder on your bird table.

Bird pudding

The birds in your garden will love this tasty snack.

Ingredients:

1-2 cups of fat
Stale bread or biscuits or bird seed
Honey
Bacon rinds

Method:

  1. Place the fat, honey and bacon scraps in a bowl.
  2. Stand the bowl in hot water.
  3. When the fat begins to melt add the bread, biscuits or bird seed.
  4. Stir the mixture and form into a ball.
  5. Press into a small container and leave to cool and set.
  6. Tip out into a net bag (the sort you buy mandarins or onions in is good)
  7. Hang the bird pudding near your bird table for birds to eat.

Be patient - it can take a while for birds to get used to feeding at the table. Keep the food and sugar water topped up regularly in winter and early spring - birds will probably have enough to eat during other times of the year, but may appreciate a source of drinking water in a safe place.

From: Forest and Bird/Get involved