Feeding garden birds is a great way to give our feathered friends a helping hand and perhaps the easiest way to attract more wildlife to your garden. Here at IWHQ we feed the birds all year round, but with a rookery nearby it’s not unusual to see dozens of enterprising corvids descend whenever we put out food. It often means the smaller birds don’t get a look in, and the feeders need topping up several times a day.
That’s inconvenient… and it can also get expensive. Scaring the raiders away is only marginally successful: they soon return, and there are often times when there’s nobody around to shoo them off.
It seems this is a common problem. I was talking to the team at the CJ Wildlife stall at Bloom in The Park in June, and they told me the most common question people asked them at the show was how to keep larger birds and opportunistic squirrels away from garden bird feeders.
One solution I’ve been testing over the last few months here at IWHQ is the new Adventurer Guardian seed feeder from CJ Wildlife. These high-quality feeders come with a sturdy metal cage that surrounds the feeder. The gaps in the cage are large enough for smaller birds to pass through unhindered, but keep larger birds and other unwanted guests off the feeder.
It works remarkably well.
When I first put the feeder up, the rooks arrived as usual in search of an easy meal. They helped themselves to loose feed from the bird table, then turned their attention to the feeder… and were utterly flummoxed. They couldn’t work out why they couldn’t get to the food. After trying for a while they gave up and turned back to easier pickings under the feeder.
The smaller birds can now feed unhindered, while the larger birds still come in to feed from the bird-table and on seed that falls below the feeders. It’s a real win-win.
Where to get your feeder guardian bird feeder
Feeder Guardians are available as pre-assembled kits or as accessories for CJ Wildlife’s excellent range of Adventurer feeders. They also offer a selection to fit some of their other feeder styles.
They aren’t cheap feeders (the Adventurer 4-port feeder with guardian that I tried retails at €65.50), but are high-quality items, and from my experience over the last couple of months I’d heartily recommend the investment if you’re having a problem with larger birds or squirrels dominating your feeders. You’re likely to recoup your investment several times over during the year in terms of the amount of feed you save.
You’ll find the full range of bird feeders and accessories on the CJ Wildlife website here.