Liven up a winter garden with a bird feeder log and watch a flurry of activity unfold! Make this feeder now and let the colour, antics and songs of birds fill the gray winter days.
- Drill with either a 35 mm (1-3/8") round or a blade wood-boring bit
- Suet (see note below)
- Screw-ended eye hook (medium or large size)
- Strong string or twine
1. Choose a straight fir, cedar, or birch log that will be easy to hang. Holding the log upright, drill a hole approximately 8 to 10 cm from the top of the log. In most cases a round boring bit will work; however, if you have very hard wood, try using a blade bit. Drill the hole approximately 3 to 4 cm deep to hold a good supply of suet.
2. Turn the log 1/2 turn and drill a second hole. Turn your log a 1/4 turn and drill a hole approximately 10 cm lower than the first hole. Repeat this step to create a feeder with staggered holes, two at each level. Staggered feeding holes allow easy access for more than one bird. Depending on the length of your log you should end up with 6 to 8 feeding holes. Clean out any wood shavings from the holes.
3. Fill each hole with suet, leaving a depth of 0.5 cm at the opening without feed. This eliminates the need for perches. Screw an eye hook into the top of the feeder and use twine to hang your feeder outside. Sit back and watch the birds arrive; you might see woodpeckers, chickadees, starlings and nuthatches.
Making Suet: Suet is a nutritional treat for insect-eating birds that’s easy to make. Collect leftover beef-fat drippings in a container and place them in the fridge to solidify. If you prefer, you can purchase lard from the grocery store. Add in peanuts, peanut butter, sunflower or mixed wild birdseed. Mix thoroughly. Suet mixture can be kept refrigerated for months.
1. Birds spot food from the air, so scatter a bit of seed on the flat top of the log and on the ground below your new feeder to draw them to the new food source.
2. Be kind: be consistent in your feeding and place your feeder in a place inaccessible to cats.