Easy To Make Bird Feeders

Easy Bird Feeders

The original intent of this article was nature-friendly and easy to make bird feeders. By the time you finish this article you will realize that it should be titled nature-friendly and easy to make SQUIRREL feeders. These poor birds usually do not stand a chance at my house, except on very rare days like the one below. Maybe the squirrels were afraid of the bright red Cardinal?

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Of course, the easiest way to feed the birds is just to throw some popcorn and seeds on your patio table, but we want to have some hands-on, project-creating fun today!

For our first bird feeder, you only need 3 components: an empty toilet paper roll, peanut butter, and bird seed. Using a spoon or knife, spread a thick layer of peanut butter all over the cardboard roll. Spread it thick because #1: squirrels, I mean birds, love peanut butter, and #2: the more peanut butter you have, the more seeds will stick to the roll. Roll it around in the seed, making sure to press.

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Your next step is to slide the roll onto a branch, like above. You can also do this with pinecones. Additionally, with pinecones, you can stuff grapes in between the scales for an extra sweet treat. Then step back and wait for a squirrel to climb up onto the tiny, thin branch and hang on for dear life while he steals the birds’ food.

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The next project involves another cardboard tube – a paper towel roll. For this bird feeder, you’ll need an empty paper towel roll, 2 wooden craft sticks, peanut butter, and bird seed. Follow the same steps that you did for the first feeder, but cut some slits in the cardboard tube before you spread the peanut butter. It is a good idea to insert the craft sticks into the slits before spreading the peanut butter, otherwise you may never locate your slits! The craft sticks provide a place for little birds to sit while they enjoy their treat. image 5

This is the only one my squirrels have not managed to steal, as I hung it in the very middle of the top bar of our deck swing , and it was too heavy for them to lift up.

This next very easy to make treat is comprised of alternating Cheerios and grapes on a craft wire. Like the bird feeder above, I placed this one in the very middle of the top bar of our deck swing, but the squirrels managed to get it. The crazy things just sat on the bar and spun the circle around each time they needed a new bite.

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The next one is a bit more complicated and involves a sharp object. Be sure to supervise your kids with knives, or better yet, do it for them. Or even better, have Dad do it. We discovered that a craft knife works best, but scissors worked ok too. You will need an empty plastic bottle, a wooden spoon, a funnel, a paper towel, and bird seed. image 7

Cut an arch-shaped hole (flat on the bottom, curved on the top) into the bottle, as near to the bottom as you can get. Make the hole big enough for the spoon to slide it and get wedged just inside. Directly across from your arch-shaped hole, cut a smaller hole as an exit for the spoon handle.

In order to keep the seed from spilling out while you are filling up the bottle, roll up a paper towel and jam it in the opening above the spoon. If you want to hang your bottle feeder in a tree, tightly tie a string around the neck of the bottle. Otherwise, just sit it on a table like I did.

The next two sweet treats involve fruit, a favorite of both birds and squirrels. All you need is bird seed, peanut butter, apples and oranges. Cut a cored apple into 1/2″ inch slices, coat with peanut butter, dredge in a generous amount of seeds, thread a string through the center and tie to a tree.

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You could do the same with the oranges…cut them into slices and hang them in a tree, but we found that the peanut butter slid off the juicy orange pulp too easily. To combat this issue, I cut the oranges in half and removed a small slither from the bottom of each half so they would stay motionless. Once covered with peanut butter and seeds, they became goodie bowls for the squirrels.

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A suet feeder has been a long-time favorite product of devoted bird lovers. Wire suet feeders are inexpensive and long lasting. Instead of using a suet cake, you can simply put a piece of bread or toast in there! Another fun non-edible way to use a suet feeder is to fill it with little pieces of yarn. Birds can pull out strands of yarn to carry off to their nests.

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So go on, celebrate Earth Day by taking care of some of God’s most beautiful creatures, right in your own back yard. Be sure to get creative with your treats! And be sure to recycle the cardboard and plastic when you ready to toss them!image 11

Just be aware that if your neighborhood is populated with squirrels, you may see this…

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Learn more about birds……


clip_image002Amy Stults is a Christian wife of 15 years to her knight in shining armor and mommy to their 10-year-old boy wonder. They have homeschooled for 6 years using a classical, literature-rich method. A die-hard Trekkie, she adores her husband and son, all things British, sweet tea, small kitchen appliances, and holidays, even the silly ones like National Eat Like a Hobbit Day. Amy has a passion for genealogy and a love for helping others trace their family trees to learn more about their roots. You can find co-managing iHomeschool Network and blogging at Milk and Cookies. Connect with Amy on Facebook and Pinterest.


  1. 1


    These are awesome! We have a bird watching area just outside our breakfast room, and my kids will love making some of these. Amy, thanks for so much hard work you put into sharing this with us!

  2. 3


    Thanks so much for these ideas! We inherited a suet feeder with the house, but I haven’t filled it and now I’m looking forward to a few dry days and installing a piece of bread AND yarn out there for the birds.

    We also use the 2L bird feeder attachment to hang in the garden with zinnia seeds collected from previous years and watch the birds enjoy that. I tried marigold seeds, but didn’t seem to attract too many birds with those. I like that the zinnia seeds that drop are then planted into the garden for a clump of pretty flowers later in the summer.

  3. 5

    Lindsey says

    Love that cute bottle bird feeder! I read at Yard Envy that you should offer bird houses near any feeders you offer. The squirrels seem to present a problem with some of them, but I like the hanging ones!

  4. 6


    GREAT IDEAS!!!!!!!!! I think I will make the necklace with the grapes and cheerios. I have some stall cheerios that would work well…

  5. 8

    Lisa says

    Thank you for these useful tips. Peanut butter sounds like a great idea, and one that I had never heard of before. My five year old twin boys are working towards obtaining their ‘Green Blue Peter Badge’ so we will be trying out the paper towel roll feeder this weekend.

  6. 9


    Some of these are cute ideas. Maybe we’ll try something with the apples. We did try cheerios and not a single bird touched it, nor any critter. Our birds do not recognize most people food as something to eat. I make homemade suet with people ingredients (wheat flour, oats, PB, beef fat, etc) and they eat this. We rarely get squirrels, but suspect this might change when our tree line grows in, but so far so good. We have raptors that also help control them since we are out in the open.

    I would question the feeding of popcorn and plain bread to the birds, though. Sure they may eat it, but birds need every bit of fat and protein they can get. Especially in the cold months. :)

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    I am loving all of your birdfeeder and squirrel food ideas! We have lots and lots of birds and squirrels so these ideas will definitely come in handy at our house. We just recently read the book The Mitten Tree and made mitten bird feeders by cutting cardboard in the shape of mittens, spreading peanut butter and sprinkling seed. The birds had their very own ‘mitten trees!’ Found your post through the site Education Possible. Have a great day!


  1. […] kids and I were at our local nature center watching the birds eat from the various bird feeders outside the viewing window. We noticed certain types of birds seemed to like certain feeders. Some […]

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