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Squirrels are very simple creatures to attract and very difficult to exclude. Backyard bird feeders are the ultimate example of this predicament—you want something that easily blends with the scenery but it has to be durable enough to accommodate a range of birds, yet tricky enough to outsmart relentless pests and squirrels. While there are some attachments one can buy to add to an already existing feeder to keep these pests at bay, you may want something that comes assembled and ready to go straight out of the package. In that case, these cleverly-designed picks are for you.
Here, the best squirrel-proof bird feeders on the market.
Best Overall: Droll Yankees Yankee Flipper Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder
When it comes to overall quality and performance, Droll Yankees Yankee Flipper is a top-notch feeder that will keep the squirrels out and the birds abundant. This feeder has four chambers and is large enough to attract all species and sizes of birds without giving access to squirrels.
A squirrel's substantial weight (at least, compared to most bird species) sets off a motor connected to the perch ring. Once the motor starts, the perch ring cycles through, taking the squirrel on a fun ride before they fall to the ground. Heavier birds are still able to access the feeder, as long as the motor is set accordingly.
This feeder measures 17 inches tall with a capacity of 5 pounds and comes in an attractive forest green color. The seed tube is made with a UV-stabilized polycarbonate and is chip-resistant. This feeder is also backed by a lifetime warranty.
Best Budget: Perky-Pet Easy Feeder
This feeder easily nabs our best budget buy because it has the high-performance of our best overall pick and a price that won’t break the bank. The problem with most budget feeders is quality and inability to provide the protection needed to keep invaders out, but this model’s stainless steel, cylindrical cage gets the job done and fits right in with any backyard or scenery.
The feeder has 12 feed ports spaced at a comfortable distance, a 4-pound capacity, and an eye-catching red base with wrap-around design—offering maximum attraction to birds of all sizes. The stainless steel hanging loop makes it easy to install and offers easy access when it needs to be refilled or cleaned. Perky-Pet also offers a 12-month limited warranty.
Best Platform: Heritage Farms Absolute Squirrel Resistant Bird Feeder
What’s great about platform feeders is their large, open-tray design is great for watching birds without any obstruction to your view. However, this exposed layout leaves feed potentially vulnerable to squirrels. Heritage Farms Woodlink Absolute II Feeder solves this issue. It offers a beautiful platform large enough to attract all kinds of birds but also the added protection from pests.
Its squirrel-proof mechanism is a lock at the top prevent roof access, and if a squirrel mounts the perch, a metal shield immediately covers the seed tray, shutting off the seed supply. This model comes with a solid, steel hanging rod and a five foot sectional pole kit with metal mounting bracket and ground socket for mounting or hanging. It has a 15-pound feeding system, which is a much larger capacity than most feeders on the market.
Best Large: North States SuperFeeder
For attracting maximum capacity, it’s important to choose a feeder with multiple feed stations spaced comfortably apart and a feeder that can offer a variety of seed. North States Super Feeder is a high-quality feeder that can easily accommodate up to nine birds at once and holds up to 12 pounds of seed.
This heavy-duty feeding station measures 14 inches tall with a 16-inch diameter. It features three plastic chambers to hold regular, sunflower, or thistle seed to attract a variety of birds. It has an inverted bowl on top that prevents squirrels from easily reaching the seed, so even larger bird species can use the feeder. This model can be mounted or hung and includes a pole and brackets for mounting as well as a hook for hanging.
Best Design: Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone II Country House with Weathervane
Not only is Perky-Pet’s adorable bird home squirrel-proof, it also comes complete with a cute, decorative weathervane. For consumers who want feeder with more personality than the average pick, this quirky, yet functional feeder is perfect for brightening up any backyard.
This model arrives conveniently assembled; simply hang it in the yard or mount it to a post and fill it with seed. Holding up to 8 pounds of seed, this feeder’s all metal construction is not only durable, it also makes it difficult for pests to latch on. The squirrel-proof mechanism is a weight activated perch bar that can be calibrated to accommodate different sized birds.
Best Window: Nature's Hangout Window Bird Feeder
If you really want your bird watching to be close to home, we like Nature’s Hangout’s acrylic feeder. It measures 12 inches in length, making it large enough for multiple birds to feed at one time. It has a transparent design for unobstructed views and includes rubber edging on the lip of the seed tray so birds can perch comfortably.
Mounting is simple—the feeder comes equipped with suction cups so it’s also easy to remove, refill, and clean. The company includes three extra suction cups for a replacement after longer-term use. Due to its window placement and well-protected design, this feeder is nearly impossible for squirrels to use for quick snacks.
Best Wooden: Perky-Pet The Lodge Wild Bird Feeder
If you want something a little more rustic in appearance, consider opting for a wooden feeder. We like Perky-Pet’s Cedar Lodge Feeder for its chalet-design that’s both functional and attractive. Made from cedar, which acts as a natural weather and insect resistant material, this feeder is also eco-friendly and comes pre-assembled. The lodge holds up to 8 pounds of seed and comes with a rope to make hanging it up a breeze. The transparent seed compartment makes it easy to monitor refills and cleaning.
The brand suggests cleaning the feeder every weeks weeks with a mild soap and water solution. Due to its natural finish, this model really blends in with the scenery, making it inviting to birds of all kinds.
Best Post: Nature Products Green Classic Pole Mount Wild Bird Feeder
For the ultimate squirrel-proof bird feeder, opt for a free-standing post placed away from tree coverage. Nature Products Pole Mount Feeder stands five feet tall with a metal top and heavy-duty squirrel baffle made of durable plastic at the base for extra protection.
This reliable feeder is made of UV-resistant tubing, measures 18 inches in height, and features three aluminum feed stations. It can hold up to 5 pounds of seed so you won’t have to constantly refill it, but at 5 feet tall, it's still easy to access, refill, and clean.
Our overall pick for squirrel-proof bird feeders is the Droll Yankees Yankee Flipper (view at Amazon). With four chambers, this high-quality feeder is big enough to attract a variety of birds and has a motor connected to the perch ring that keeps squirrels out. For a budget-friendly option that is also high-performing, consider the Perky-Pet Easy Feeder (view at Amazon). With stainless steel construction, this cylindrical cage provides protection from squirrels and is easy to install and access.
Why Trust The Spruce?
This article was written by Meredith Hurd, a freelance writer who has been writing for The Spruce since 2019. To make this list, she considered the price, design, and style of each bird feeder.