You had to remember to put it on your shopping list. Then you had to find it at Costco. Next was lugging the 35-pound bucket to your car and then into your house. Once you filled the feeder with the bird seed you just bought, you thought you were done for a few days.
Four hours later, the bird feeder’s empty. A gray squirrel perched on it stares resolutely at the pile of seed he missed, now on the grass.
Squirrels have a knack for being everywhere they shouldn’t, whether it’s scampering through a hole near a gutter or dining on a delectable variety of bird seed. Here are the best ways to keep them away from your bird feeder, courtesy of howtogetridofstuff.com.
Make them walk a slippery tight wire. The idea is not to help squirrels audition for the circus. It’s to make sure they stay away from the birdfeeder and your home. Since they love to move about on power lines, your best bet is buy some PVC pipe. Slit it, then position it over applicable wires.
Try a pole feeder. There’s nothing magical about it, but if you set it up correctly, the food for your feathered friends will be above the height a squirrel is able to jump.
Seal off a section. Experts say that you have to be careful never to trap a squirrel inside your home. You need to locate any animals and send them packing from the area where they’re living or hiding. Next, locate an old window screen or some mesh and put it over any vents or other entry points.
Give trees a haircut. This step is also based on how squirrels jump. Make sure the lowest branch of any tree is at least 15 feet from your home.
Set traps. You’ll need a trap plus the right bait. While you can buy a variety of bait brands at home improvement stores, peanut butter is probably the cheapest.
Buy a custom bird feeder. They’re designed for bird lovers with special needs. Many are sensitive to weight and will seal off feeding ports the second a squirrel lands on the feeder. Since birds are much smaller, they’re still able to feed. Some custom feeders even emit an electrical shock that someone only affects squirrels hoping for a tasty lunch.
Install a squirrel baffle. A baffle looks like a smooth lampshade. It’s intended to make it impossible for a squirrel to get the proper footing or stay balanced. You can buy many brands online and at a home improvement store.
Clean targeted areas. This is the time to get rid of the old newspapers, leaves or a torn bag of dog food you’ve been meaning to throw out from your storage shed. You should clean out any trash cans, then make sure their lids are always securely fastened. Be sure to remove any seeds that might be lurking among fallen leaves or yard debris. Clean your grill and, if possible, empty all pet food dishes each night.
Utilize a repellent. This is very much a try-and-see technique. You’ll probably need to try several to get one that works. Many sold commercially contain parts of hot peppers or the urine of squirrel predators. Sprays and gels usually have a bitter taste.