At last! A squirrel-proof bird feeder that is actually squirrel-proof AND affordable! The Squirrel Buster bird feeder actually works, and attracts a wide variety of birds at an affordable price.
Seeking a bird feeder that would actually feed the birds and not the squirrels, and wanting a feeder large enough to feed the cardinals, I stopped at A Bird’s Paradise at the 2nd Street Market and asked Rachel for a recommendation. She suggested the Squirrel Buster Mini (although larger sizes of this feeder are available). The Mini is still large enough to allow the cardinals to feed, and holds 3/4 quart of seed.
This feeder has a unique design: there is an inner chamber which you fill with seeds, and an outer plastic ‘shroud’. When a squirrel or a really large bird (American crow) lands on one of the perches, their weight pulls the shroud down, thereby closing off their access to the seeds (but it does not harm them). The spring tension of the shroud is calibrated at the factory to close at the weight of 115 grams (about four ounces) but is adjustable, for those who might want to try to allow the crows to eat while still denying access to squirrels, or for those individuals who just want to feed only the tiniest of birds. I honestly don’t think an American crow is going to fit on the perch, although cardinals can fit, as do a wide variety of perching and clinging birds (they can cling to the wire mesh at the side of the feeder).
As clean bird feeders are as important to the health of wild birds (grimy bird feeders can be a source of contamination that can be fatal to birds), it is good to know that the components of the Squirrel Buster can be cleaned with a solution of dish detergent and warm water, and rinsed with a solution of white vinegar (a mild natural disinfectant). You can disassemble this feeder by hand, without the use of tools. And check this out: the clear tube of the feeder acts like a greenhouse, trapping hot air inside the feeder. The vents at the top of the feeder allow the heated air to escape and then cooler air is drawn through those vents, helping the feed to stay fresh and dry.
The Squirrel Buster is chew proof, and at a modest price of $23.95, it has already paid for itself by feeding only the birds; I am no longer paying for black-oil sunflower seeds only to have the squirrels hork them down in amazing quantities. The squirrels, by the way, soon learn to not even bother with the Squirrel Buster, and are now eating the formerly untouched field corn that I have always put out for them.
The Squirrel Buster attaches easily to a shepherd’s hook or branch of a tree; if you have troubles with raccoons removing the feeder and rolling it on the ground to remove seeds (funny, but damaging to the feeder) you can easily latch it to the shepherd’s hook with a carabiner clip or simply take the feeder in at night time.
The Mini Squirrel Buster shown in the photo has a lifetime hassle-free warranty!
Lest readers feel sorry for the squirrels at my house, it should be known that I have always provided ears of field corn on a sort of ‘bungee’ squirrel feeder. The corn remained untouched all winter… until I got the Squirrel Buster. Suddenly the squirrels are very enthusiastic about the field corn, now that their sunflower seed supply has been cut off!
Stop by A Bird’s Paradise at 2nd Street Market and talk to Rachel about the type of birds you are trying to attract and feed at your house, and check out the Squirrel Buster feeders while you are there!
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Squirrel Buster feeder
When squirrels or very large birds land on the feeder, the outer ‘shroud’ comes down (with the weight of the creature) and cuts off their seed supply, although this does not hurt the squirrel or say, crow in any way.
Squirrel Buster feeder
Unlike the two feeders in the background, this is truly a squirrel-proof feeders, and will save you a boatload of money in seeds not wasted.
Cardinal in lilac bush
Cardinals, such as this brightly colored fellow in the lilac bush, are easily able to perch on the Squirrel Buster and eat their fill of seeds.
The bungee feeder was of much greater interest to the squirrels after the Squirrel Buster feeder went up! Dried field corn can be purchased at 2nd Street Market year-round.