We have a night thief. I love feeding birds but squirrels are pigs so we invested in a squirrel proof feeder. It worked great. They get frustrated but do not eat anything but the crumbs thrown down by the greedy Nuthatches. I have really enjoyed seeing the myriad of birds flock to our feeder. Our hummingbird feeder attracts 2-4 hummers every morning and at dusk so I am thrilled. THEN, I noticed the feeder was emptying too quickly.
I did a few experiments. When I filled the feeder in the morning, it was fine all day and then overnight it was empty. When I refilled the feeder at supper time it was completely drained by morning. Hmmmmm. Methinks it is a nocturnal animal. The bird feeder claims to be squirrel proof but is it opossum or raccoon proof? Is ANYTHING raccoon proof?
We have a ton of new construction in our area and we have seen deer and rabbits displaced so I am not surprised other wildlife are moving in. We have always had coyotes (I despise them) but I am seeing more and more critters bravely come to my deck and eat my pitiful attempts at container gardening.
Birdseed costs money so as much as I would love to help the other animals out I have to figure a cheaper way to help them. After some research online I have a few options:
- Take in the bird feeder in every night – ugh what a bother
- Buy baffles – more $ to invest just to see pretty birds eat
- Set out cheap cat food in a bowl AWAY from the bird feeder to entice the little boogers to eat something else. They are not finicky and there are some really cheap cat kibble out there.
- Add hot pepper to the bird feed to discourage mammals from eating the seeds.
I sent out an email to the family to see what they wanted to try. I would hate to stop feeding the birds. The rabbits also enjoy whatever drops and they also eat the fresh greens when the seeds germinate. I’m not sure what we will do, but my heart goes out to all the wild critters. I know they are desperate to come looking in our very big and busy subdivision.