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Squirrels: Feed or Repel?

24

Replies to: Squirrels: Feed or Repel?

  • happymomof1happymomof1 Registered User Posts: 29,442 Senior Member
    We have had success with the "hot" birdseed. You can make your own by mixing some cayenne pepper in with whatever birdseed you already have.

    We have a suet feeder that is to unstable for the squirrels. They've tried, but it made them nervous and they jumped away.
  • greenwitchgreenwitch Registered User Posts: 8,641 Senior Member
    I tried to grow popcorn once. The squirrels went crazy. I pretty much drenched the plants in a cayenne spray and one of them chewed a corn stalk at the base, and dragged it back and forth across the grass until the cayenne was worn off!

    All the stupid squirrels die young from car accidents. We are making them more clever!
  • cellomom2cellomom2 Registered User Posts: 675 Member
    I used to have a finch feeder with Niger seed with posts placed so that the birds have to hang upside down to get at the seed. Supposedly sparrows are too heavy to be able to do it but my clever sparrows were able to figure out a way to get at the seed without hanging upside down. The spring loaded feeder worked great for me to keep out the squirrels but I was just overrun with so many sparrows that I gave up after awhile.
    Last summer the zinnias I had planted attracted lots of smaller birds, honey bees and monarch butterflies!
  • zeebamomzeebamom Registered User Posts: 1,351 Senior Member
    Yesterday evening a squirrel tried to get into a lantern we have hanging off the lattice fencing on our deck; it looks a lot like a bird feeder.

    We used to have the bird feeders on skinny poles. It worked well, but the squirrels and the other rodents with skinny tails went after the seed that was knocked to the ground. We kept the bird bath, a couple of hummingbird feeders (and their favorite plants) and got rid of the seeds.
  • SC AnteaterSC Anteater Registered User Posts: 371 Member
    Ugh, definitely repel squirrels.

    I've actually given up feeding birds; instead I've planted native plants that are food sources (and let others, like basil, go to seed because the birds like them). I like this way much better! I've had a much wider diversity of birds in my yard since I've started this.
  • doschicosdoschicos Registered User Posts: 20,370 Senior Member
    "but the squirrels and the other rodents with skinny tails went after the seed that was knocked to the ground"

    That I have never minded and figure it's fair game and actually helpful at cleaning up. Some birds are really messy eaters or finicky and seem to kick anything they don't like out of the bird feeder.
  • deb922deb922 Registered User Posts: 5,691 Senior Member
    We had a squirrel proof feeder, with a baffle and greased the pole. Worked, no squirrels (except for that pesky flying squirrel). But then we had tons of deer that ate the leftover bird seed. But the last straw was the bear that bent the pole at a 90 degree angle and took off with the feeder. We haven’t had a bird feeder since. Miss all the birds.
  • droppeditdroppedit Registered User Posts: 1,041 Senior Member
    The only success we've had against squirrels is using food that they don't like (thistle) or High Energy Suet in a cage on a thin wire away from everything. Even a feeder where the suet was wasn't enough because the squirrels would climb up the nearby drain pipe and jump to it. I greased the pipe but knew it wasn't a long term solution.

    The High Energy Suet cage in the same place worked wonders. We get all the birds and none of the squirrels (bluebirds, cardinals, woodpeckers, goldfinches, etc.).
  • ChoatieMomChoatieMom Registered User Posts: 5,352 Senior Member
    Eat the squirrels?

    I don't know. I think they are a lot cuter than birds.
  • BunsenBurnerBunsenBurner Registered User Posts: 38,635 Senior Member
    @jym626 has some good suggestions. :) Squrrels are pests and menace to our power grid. I will never voluntarily feed them... birds don't much feeding unless their food sources are covered with snow. That said, Mr. B keeps a few feeders... and a few mouse traps in the garage. Pests get attracted to the fallen bird seed.
  • jym626jym626 Registered User Posts: 57,360 Senior Member
    I can’t take credit for the squirrel catapults. But there are some great ones :)
  • silverladysilverlady Registered User Posts: 766 Member
    We had a non squirrel proof feeder for a while, and we had the fattest squirrels you ever saw. They would gorge themselves daily.

    Then, we got squirrel proof feeders from Lowe's. My DH was skeptical, but the first morning it was up, we watched from the kitchen window. The fattest squirrel climbed the tree. He looked at it from the bottom, then the middle and then the top. He jumped onto it from the top and went down to the holes. Lo and behold, the holes were covered up and he couldn't get any seed. He walked around it, but he couldn't get anything. He knew we were watching and laughing. He glared at us, but we still kept laughing and pointing at him!!! We had won!!!

    We are still winning. The squirrels will find seed that drops under the feeder, but have given up even trying to get seed out of the feeder. We love it!! The birds love it!!

    As a side note, the term bird brained fits. It the birds had had any smarts, they would have dive bombed the squirrels when on the old feeders, but they never tried.
  • HImomHImom Registered User Posts: 34,234 Senior Member
    One if my friends said that squirrels and/or chipmunks are carriers of bubonic plague, so I’d do what I could to repel all rodents from our area (fortunately we don’t fave any of these).

    We have a fig tree and unfortunately the birds find our figs d licious. We don’t purposely feed them. They also help thems lives to avocados if we let them stay on the tree till they ripen.

    We don’t purposely feed any critters and fortunately I don’t believe our neighbors feed wild creatures either. There is no snow here, so creatures can firage year round.
  • tutumom2001tutumom2001 Registered User Posts: 1,185 Senior Member
    What's the difference between a squirrel and a rat? A fluffy tail.

    I have trapped and relocated them, but we still get them (along with chipmunks, opossums, raccoons and who knows what - but I do like the wild rabbits). It's not legal, but I do have a neighbor who uses a .22 to take care of business.
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