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Bird watchers and outdoor lovers alike often find a simple feeder can offer unique opportunities to attract new bird into the yard. Unfortunately, the joy you can experience is often short-lived when other animals, such as squirrels, try to get a quick meal from the feeder. If you find yourself wanting to feed the birds without other creatures joining in on the feast, it is time to buy a squirrel-proof feeder.
The best bird feeders make it difficult for squirrels to access the supply of seeds and suet in the first place. Weight-sensitive barriers, metal cages, sloped lids, metal poles, and other measures can keep squirrels away from the food supply or from the bird feeder altogether. When choosing one to buy, make sure you select a feeder that is appropriate for the types of birds you want to attract. Larger birds, such as cardinals, often have different needs compared to their smaller cousins.
Check out these top squirrel-proof bird feeders you can buy to attract a whole number of different bird species.
01 of 08
Best Overall: Brome Squirrel Buster Classic
The best bird feeders make it easy to place a good supply of seeds without the worry of other creatures having a free meal. While no bird feeder is truly squirrel proof, the top pick on this list has several safety measures to make sure only the birds will get a good meal without any "thieves" getting in the way.
The Brome Squirrel Buster Classic is a simple bird feeder you can hang from any tree limb, hook or other high spots. The protective metal cage is chew and weatherproof to keep the feeder’s exterior safe. To keep unwanted visitors out, the four seed ports automatically close under the weight of a squirrel trying to gain access to the food inside. There is also a built-in ventilation system to keep the seeds fresh and hydrated for as long as possible.
02 of 08
Best Budget: Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone
Budget bird feeders often lack the best protection and defenses against squirrels and other would-be invaders. Thankfully, it does not take much to mount a decent defense with a good cage or barrier between the seeds and the outside. This next bird feeder offers a great layer of protection mixed with a distinctive look that will fit in well with any backyard.
The Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone bird feeder blends classic, rustic looks with a functional metal cage meant to keep squirrels from damaging the exterior. The metal cage has a variety of brown leaves that block animals from chewing through to the inside of the feeder. Birds, meanwhile, have easy access to the seeds through six feeding ports with u-shaped perches for comfortable feeding.
03 of 08
Best User-Friendly: Squirrel-X Circular Suet
There is more to bird feeding than just picking the right feeder. In some ways, the art is also a science when learning to pick the right seeds, find the right location, and how to protect the feeder from harm. A user-friendly bird feeder can help decrease the learning curve with an easy-to-use loading cage and a reliable defense against squirrels and other animals.
Making it easy to fill and maintain a bird feeder in your yard, the Squirrel-X Circular Suet feeder takes a lot of the usual upkeep out of the equation. Well suited for woodpeckers and other suet-loving birds, the 10-inch diameter feeder sports a dual-layer metal cage and solid lid to allow birds to access the inner chamber while blocking larger creatures. The feeder uses suet and seed cakes so you can quickly refill the interior whenever it runs low.
04 of 08
Best Large: Heritage Farms Woodlink
The size of the bird feeder will often determine the types and number of birds you can attract at any given time. While smaller feeders are easier to maintain and place, larger varieties offer more potential to attract different types of birds. They can also be more protected against other wild animals when placed on a pole or hung from an isolated position off of the ground.
Hanging from a tree or sitting on a pole, the Heritage Farms Woodlink bird feeder is the best way to feed a lot of hungry beaks at once. With a 15-pound seed capacity and trough feeding system, the Woodlink allows many birds to congregate at the same time. The top locks and unlocks for refilling while keeping squirrels and other small creatures out of the seed reservoir.Continue to 5 of 8 below.
05 of 08
Best for Cardinals: Roamwild PestOff Cardinal Feeder
One of the joys of feeding the birds is seeing what you can actually attract. Attracting Cardinals to your yard can be tricky, especially for beginners. Often larger than other bird species, most common bird feeders lack the necessary strength and support for cardinals. As a result, the best feeders that attract these unique birds have larger, more durable perches and defenses tailored to their greater weight.
The Roamwild PestOff Cardinal Feeder offers the perfect temporary home for hungry cardinals. It sports large perches that automatically close the feed ports whenever a larger animal tries to climb on. The large storage tube is easy to access and is ideal for the seeds cardinals love the most such as sunflower seeds.
06 of 08
Best Decorative: Perky-Pet Wilderness Lantern
It is easy to forget about the visual appeal a bird feeder can add to a yard when you are only concerned about finding the right type and size of a feeder. Do not ignore this potential, however, since a well-designed bird feeder can act as a decorative addition or focal point to the outside. Find the right bird feeder to express your personal style or add something unique to the exterior decor.
For a rustic look with ample security, the Perky-Pet Wilderness Lantern is a good choice for something decorative and small in the yard with a two-pound seed capacity. The metal wilderness cutouts add both flair and security that keeps squirrels out in combination with the locking cap. The four feeding perches are adjustable to fit different species of birds as well.
07 of 08
Best Multi-Bird: Brome Squirrel Buster Plus
Bird feeders are often defined by the number of feed ports they offer. Individual ports are great for one or two birds to eat at, but also present a security risk when squirrels try to get to the seeds inside. If you want to feed multiple birds and bird types at once without the worry of squirrels getting in, the Brome Squirrel Buster Plus bird feeder is a great option to check out.
This bird feeder manages to offer a lot of feeding area in a narrow space. Sporting a cardinal ring that stretches the entire circumference of the feeder, this smart purchase has six feeding ports for simultaneous feeding. Each port closes under the weight of a squirrel, temporarily blocking access to the seeds inside. You can adjust the activation weight to cater to larger birds as well.
08 of 08
Best Post Feeder: Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone II Country House
While most bird feeders can easily hang from virtually any hook, branch, ledge, or other high point, these can present a challenge when it comes to squirrel proofing. Since most squirrel species live in the trees, they can often access a hanging bird feeder without too much difficulty, This is where a post-mounted feeder can have the advantage. Using a slippery metal post, for example, these feeders can make it more difficult for squirrels to access the feed ports in the first place.
Choose the Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone II Country House bird feeder when you want a great decorative piece in your yard you can place almost anywhere. The feeder can be easily mounted to a metal pole or hung from any high point. Security-wise, the feeder features a weight-sensitive and adjustable perch that closes when larger animals such as squirrels climb onboard.