DIY Bird Feeders

Written by ErAH Dec 6 • 3 minute read

We see--and appreciate!--all of you staying home to protect our community.

We also see (and feel) the winter blues in a big way this year. So, we're digging deep for some at-home activities to bring a little cheer.

The following are some bird-safe DIY projects you can do yourself or with a human kitten (more commonly called a "child", or so we've heard). They'll be sure to bring a little life to your yard or patio this winter and spread some love to Mother Nature.

For more information on what to feed backyard birds, check out the Humane Society's article!




Cookie Cutter Bird Treats

Ingredients & Supplies

  • Birdseed (~3 cups)
  • Unflavored gelatin (3 small envelopes)
  • Water (3/4 cup)
  • Wax paper
  • Cookie cutters (thick ones, open on both top and bottom, work best)
  • Straw
  • String or ribbon


  1. Dissolve gelatin in water according to package directions
  2. Stir gelatin mix into birdseed until fully mixed
  3. Lightly grease inside of cookie cutters with cooking spray or shortening
  4. Place cookie cutters on wax paper and then pack with seed-gelatin mixture
  5. Use straw to poke a hole through your packed seed mix (to pass ribbon when complete); leave straw in place
  6. Allow to cool and harden completely (usually several hours or overnight)
  7. Pass ribbon or string through hole and tie into a loop
  8. Hang from fences, trees, or railings and watch the birds enjoy!

Note: gelatin can melt in warm temperatures, so keep an eye on these if there's a warm spell!

Variation: try forming the mix into balls of varying sizes, then use to fill a wire mesh container -- it's more squirrel resistant and will hold up better than string or ribbon!





Peanut Butter Paper Roll Feeders

Ingredients & Supplies

  • Empty toilet paper rolls
  • Peanut butter (no artificial sweeteners)
  • Birdseed
  • String or ribbon


  1. Coat cardboard roll with a smear of peanut butter
  2. Pour birdseed onto a plate and roll peanut butter-covered tube through the mix until well covered
  3. Pass string or ribbon through center of roll and tie into a loop
  4. Hang from branches around the yard

Note: peanut butter works best when it is near or below freezing outside. Once your roll is made, put it outside for an hour to harden, then hang. Avoid using peanut butter in hot weather.




Tin Can Feeder

Ingredients & Supplies

  • Coffee can
  • Scissors
  • String
  • Decoration (fabric and glue or non-toxic paints)
  • Hot glue gun
  • Birdseed


  1. Cut bottom off of can (so it is open on each side)
  2. Cut plastic lid in half and glue one half to each end (line them up, so that one side of the can can hold seed)
  3. Decorate outside as desired (we like to glue festive fabric around the outside with Modge Podge or a hot glue gun, but you can also paint or leave plain!)
  4. Thread string through openings and tie in a loop, or tie around the middle of the can, using a little hot glue to secure
  5. Fill with birdseed and hang from a favorite branch, then refill as needed





Ingredients & Supplies

  • Mesh produce bags (the type oranges or foil-wrapped chocolate coins come in;  the holes will need to be relatively small)
  • String
  • Birdseed (look for mixes made of larger seeds or bird-safe items that won't fall through the mesh easily)


  1. Fill bags with birdseed and tie closed, leaving a long tail of string
  2. Tie strings together to create a small bundle of bags hanging together
  3. Hang this bunch from any available branch or hook

Variation: Try a wall-mounted rack as a squirrel-safe(r) way to offer birds these delicacies; you can expand your offerings with peanuts, almonds, and even bunches of whole grain stalks!

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