Introduction: Bird & Squirrel Feeder

Hello, my name is Santiago Marcos Navarro and I am a High School student from Monterrey, Mexico. For this Instructables project I was looking forward to solving a problem and want that my family has had for the past years.

The problem has been that the squirrels and birds that come by our house have been eating our dog’s food. The thing is that dog food is expensive, and instead of only feeding our dogs (which we have five to feed), it feeds the birds and squirrels as well. On the other hand, our want has been to have birds and squirrels closer to us, and closely visible through our house’s windows.

Knowing that we can feed birds for a cheaper price than a dog, and that having a feeder for them close to us could cause them to get closer to us, I decided to do a feeder from which birds and squirrels could eat. This could prevent them from eating our dog’s food, and could get them closer to our view.

After several prototypes which were separated by improvements, this was my final one.

Step 1: Step #1: Gather

The first step is to gather all of the materials needed for this project. Materials include:

- 4 pieces of wood plus 2 optional ones or 1 big one to be cut into pieces.

- 2 plastic bottles, 1 with, and 1 without cap (I chose 1.5 liter bottles).

- 2 plastic open containers (I chose 12 cm of diameter, 7 cm of height cylindrical plastic containers).

- 1 rope.

- 1 wire.

- 6 screws or nails.

- Hot glue (or some sort of glue).

You should also consider gathering the tools you will use to build this product. These tools may include:

- Measuring tape.

- Hammer or screwdriver (depending on if you use nails or screws).

- Exacto knife.

- Wire cutter.

- Hand saw (if the wooden pieces are not in the measurements already).

- Pencil (or some sort of marker)

Step 2: Step #2: Measure & Mark

After gathering all the necessary materials and tools, what you need to do is start to measure the materials to the right sizes and mark them so you have a reference when you are going to cut them. You should measure:

- Main piece of wood: I recommend that this piece of wood has a length of the height of your bottle plus half, and width of the diameter of your bottle (sideways) plus half. Should have 3 wire sized circles (1 on the left and 2 on the right) ¼ of the way up of the main piece indicating where your wire to hold your bottle will cross through. Should also have a circle or hook shaped mark on top indicating where your rope to hold this product from the tree will go through. For the main piece, I chose a length of: 40 cm, and a width of: 10 cm. I marked this piece of wood with a hook on top, and placed the 3 wire sized circle holes ¼ of the way up, putting 2 of them in one side, and 1 in the other.

- Other pieces of wood: Optional sizes. For the floor piece I chose a length of: 25 cm, and a width of: 12 cm. For the roofs I chose a length of: 13 cm, and a width of: 12 cm for each. For the 2 optional pieces I chose a length of: 16 cm, and a width of 2.5 cm for each.

- Wire: Should cover the added circumference of your two bottles through the side. I chose a length of: 40 cm.

- Rope: Length you want the bird feeder to hang down from the tree. I chose a length of: 65 cm.

Step 3: Step #3: Cut

After measuring and marking, the next step is to cut the materials to their measurements. Use the tools to do this. You can use:

- The handsaw to cut the wood, or have it cut in some store like Home Depot.

- Use the drill to make the 3 holes in the main piece of wood.

- Use the exacto knife to cut the rope.

- Use the wire cutter to cut the wire.

In the bottle you will use for the water (the bottle with the cap), you should poke a hole near the cap (this will let water flow out of it in a moderate form).

Step 4: Step #4: Attach

Next comes putting the materials together. In this step you will also need your tools. You should:

  1. - Use the screwdriver to attach the floor to the main piece of wood with the screws, or use the hammer to attach them with the nails. Place it below the main piece in a perpendicular way.
  2. - Use the screwdriver to attach the roofs to the main piece of wood with the screws, or use the hammer to attach them with the nails. Place them below the hook/hole that is on the top of the main piece. Place them in a sideways diagonal form to protect this product from the rain, making the rain go to the side (not the front).
  3. - Use the glue to attach the plastic open containers on the floor piece (facing up).
  4. - Pass the wire through the small holes in the main piece of wood. Start passing the wire through the side that has only one hole and pass both ends of the wire in each of the other holes. Fold the ends so they don’t loosen out. This should create a circular form on each side. Place the bottles downward through the wire in each side.
  5. - Tie the rope to the hole/hook on top.
  6. - Lastly you could add the optional pieces to the sides of the main piece of wood next to the plastic bottles and open containers. Place them in a horizontal way. Use the screwdriver or hammer to attach them.

Step 5: Step #5: Install

After adding the food and water to this feeder, the last step is up to you. It’s your choice if you want to paint this product to make it unique or add anything that your creative mind would like to add. You could place this amazing product next to your window in a tree or in any place outside to make your backyard look special.

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