how deter squirrels from bird feeder

Few things are more frustrating than being continually outwitted by a squirrel on a mission to steal food from the bird feeder in your yard.

While there are no foolproof guarantees, following the tips below will help stop squirrels from raiding your bird feeder. Then, you can enjoy bird watching from the comfort of your home.

Or, if you prefer, look at our top five picks for the best squirrel-proof bird feeders instead.

1. Elevation, elevation, elevation

Birds (including hummingbirds) have wings. Squirrels, well, dont. This tip is all about keeping bird feeders high enough (and distant enough) to keep squirrels off every feeder pole and bird feeder in your yard, unless you’re dealing with an infestation of flying squirrels, in which case, yikes!

Here’s the lowdown: A squirrel will typically not jump higher than five feet off the ground. They will not jump more than 7 feet across. Additionally, they won’t leap more than nine feet from above. Finding a secure location to hang a bird feeder that satisfies all the requirements of the 5-7-9 rule may help you prevent squirrels from getting to your feeder.

However, this rule makes more sense in theory than it does in reality. Consider all the locations in your neighborhood where you have seen squirrels. On power lines, on roofs, jumping from tree to tree. If not, continue reading to find a good location for a squirrel-proof bird feeder that is both high and far enough away.

4. Choose your bird seeds wisely

Birds arent particularly picky scavengers. Theyll eat pretty much whatever. But, it seems, squirrels dont like safflower seeds. Try adding some to your bird feeders. It might be sufficient to include an unappealing seed in your bird blend to permanently deter squirrels from using your bird feeders.

Add a little white proso millet or nyjer seeds to your regular sunflower seeds to attract squirrels.

With any luck, this low-maintenance method will be sufficient to deter squirrels. You dont have to throw out all your seed, either. These three “squirrel repeller” seeds are easy to incorporate into your mixture.

5. Spice up your feed

Squirrels and birds have very different taste buds. It turns out that birds do not experience heat or spice in the same way that humans do, nor do acorn-eating squirrels.

It’s unclear, though, if this advice is true or merely an old wives tale. However, there is a rumor that you can squirrel-proof bird food by adding a spoonful or two of dehydrated cayenne pepper to your bag of seeds.

Why? Well, the compound in spicy food known as capsaicin is what gives us that spicy sensation when we eat a hot dish. Mammals’ mouths contain unique nerves that respond to hot peppers. and squirrels are mammals! But birds, of course, are not. Squirrels hate the seeds from hot peppers, but birds love them.

Thus, if you’re searching for a squirrel-proof feeder, it might be more important than you think what’s inside!

Note of caution: some avian enthusiasts think that pepper and spicy seeds can irritate a bird’s eyes. Please do your research before choosing this method.


What will keep squirrels out of bird feeders?

Try Using Hot Peppers Birds do not mind the spicy seeds. But squirrels will get an unwelcome burn from the capsicum oils and avoid your feeder in the future. Look for birdseed blends advertised as “squirrel-free” or “hot.” You can also buy pure pepper seed to mix into your existing feed.

What is the best homemade squirrel repellent?

To keep squirrels out of a birdfeeder or other parts of a yard, spray the property with a mixture of tabasco sauce and water or sprinkle ground pepper throughout the area. This can also work for crawlspaces and attics, although if applied as a liquid solution, it may discolor hardwood surfaces.

Where do you put a bird feeder so squirrels don’t get to it?

The key to successfully keeping a bird feeder squirrel-proof is its placement. Feeders should be placed at least four feet above the ground and eight feet from any point from which squirrels can leap; squirrels are agile and are able to jump up to 8 feet horizontally and 4 feet vertically.

Does aluminum foil deter squirrels from bird feeders?

I don’t know whether it’s the shiny surface or the crinkly sound it makes when touched that keeps them off, but it turns out aluminum foil is a great squirrel repellent.