Building a bird feeder is the perfect family-friendly weekend project. You’ll attract an assortment of beautiful birds to your yard while spending much-needed quality time with your kids.
A bird feeder is a fun and easy project that you can build using existing items in your house. You can use everything from untreated scrap wood and plastic bottles to toilet paper rolls and egg cartons.
How to Build a Wooden Bird Feeder
Are you pretty handy and ready to make something in your workshop? A traditional wooden bird feeder may be the way to go for you. Best of all, you only need one cedar fence picket to build it!
- Measure the board out to about 8½ inches. Make a mark and cut it. This is the base of the feeder.
- Cut out two boards, each measuring 7 inches long. Each board should have a 20-degree angle on each top edge. Draw the angles on each board and cut both of them simultaneously, so they match. These are two of the feeder’s four sides.
- Cut out two boards, each measuring about 5 inches long and 4¼ inches wide. These are the other two sides of the feeder.
- Next, you’re going to make the roof. Cut out two boards, each measuring about 8 inches long. Each board should have a 20-degree angle on the edge, so they fit together at the peak of the roof. Measure and cut a 20-degree angle for each board.
- Next, you need to create a border that goes around each side to keep the birdseed from falling out. There should be one long piece and two short pieces for each side. The long piece should be around 4¼ inches long, while the two shorter pieces should be about 1½ inches long. The height of all the pieces should be around an inch tall.
- Take the boards from Step 3 and glue them to the sides of the boards from Step 2. This forms the main structure of the feeder. Allow time for the glue to cure the wood. You can also use finishing nails to speed up the process.
- Attach the main structure to the base from Step 1 using wood glue and brad nails.
- Take the border pieces from Step 5 and attach them to each side of the base using wood glue and brad nails.
- Take one of the roof pieces from Step 4 and attach it to one side of the main structure using wood glue and brad nails. Take the other roof piece and screw in two evenly spaced hinges. The piece should flex up and down so you can easily fill the feeder with bird food.
- Examine your backyard and figure out the best place to hang or position your new bird feeder.
More of a visual learner? Watch this video created by Specific Love Creations called, “How to Make a Bird Feeder with 1 Board.”
DIY Bird Feeder Ideas
Don’t worry if you’re not handy enough to build a wooden bird feeder. There are tons of creative bird feeder ideas that you and your kids can make together. Here are a few easy DIY projects to consider.
Plastic Bottle Bird Feeder
- Grab a plastic bottle with a cap. Ensure it’s clean and dry. Then, find two wooden dowels or pencils and set them aside.
- Towards the bottom of the bottle, poke holes on opposite sides using a thumbtack. Then, widen the holes using a pair of small scissors. Make sure it’s roughly the same width as the dowel or pencil.
- Push the dowel or pencil through both holes. This forms the first perch for the bids.
- Repeat Steps 2 and 3 higher up on the bottle. However, make sure this perch is perpendicular to the bottom perch.
- Use the thumbtack and scissors to make two small drainage holes at the bottom of the bottle.
- About 1½ above each perch, create feeding holes that are approximately the size of a penny.
- At the neck of the bottle, make two small holes on opposite sides. Ensure you can thread a string through the holes.
- Pour bird feed into the bottle. Ensure the feeding holes are small enough, so all the bird feed doesn’t pour out.
- Screw the cap back on and hang your bird feeder on a tree branch or another suitable location.
Toilet Paper Roll Bird Feeder
- Pour a can of birdseed into a container that’s big enough to hold a toilet paper roll.
- Use a butter knife or your finger to spread honey or peanut butter around the entire roll. Feel free to use as much honey or peanut butter as you need.
- Place the toilet paper roll in the birdseed container and spin it around. Keep rotating the roll until it’s completely covered in birdseed. Take the rollout of the container and allow it dry.
- Once it’s dry, thread a two-foot string through the roll. Grab both ends of the string and tie a knot.
- Hang it on a tree branch or another suitable location.
Egg Carton Bird Feeder
Once you’ve gone through all your eggs, use the carton to make a simple bird feeder. Follow these steps:
- Remove the carton’s top and cut the bottom in half, so there are only six spots for the birdseed.
- Poke holes on each corner of the carton.
- Cut two pieces of string about a foot long each.
- Thread each string through the holes diagonally. Tie double knots on each hole.
- Fill all six spots with birdseed.
- Hang the feeder on a branch or another suitable location.
A bird feeder is a great way to attract feathered friends in your backyard, allowing you and your kids to spot and admire a variety of beautiful species. Whatever project you choose, have fun spending quality time with the little ones!
Are you going to try to build one of these bird feeders? Let us know in the comments!