Who doesn’t enjoy listening to birds and watching them interact with each other? If you do, you can make this simple bird feeder by re-purposing some random things that you might already have at home, like a wire hanger, a wine bottle, and a tofu container.
Once your bird feeder is up on your tree, you will get to meet some of the prettiest birds of your neighborhood and learn more about their physiognomy, behaviors, and personalities. Just to warn you though, cute little birds can get pretty demanding, so don’t be surprised if they come to your window soliciting refills!
- 1 empty, clean and dry wine bottle
- 1 wire hanger
- 1 round or square resilient container (neither too deep nor too shallow)
- Some extra wire or durable string
- A set of pliers
- Bird seed
- Optional: Decorate the hanger with some thread, twine, beads, or whatever your creativity and junk drawers come up with. You can also add a roof to keep the rain water out of your bird seed. You can make a sturdy roof with the bottom of a coffee can glued to two corks (see image at the bottom of the page).
Note: If you want to keep pigeons from using your bird feeder, make sure you use a small dish or container as the seed holder.
Bend the hanger into the shape shown in the picture. One end of the bird feeder will be the hanger hook, which will be used to hang the bird feeder. The other end will be a wire loop you have to make that will be used to rest the neck of the wine bottle, which will stand upside-down. The set of pliers will be very helpful for bending and straightening the hanger wire. For safety reasons, make sure you wear your gloves.
Steps to bend the hanger properly and decorate the wire:
To decorate the hanger you can wrap the wire with some rustic twine or thick thread. Since the bird feeder will be exposed to outdoor weather, try to use resilient materials.
Pass the neck of the wine bottle through the loop made with the wire hanger leaving the bottle upside-down. You will need a piece of wire or thread to secure–as if it was a belt–the bottle to the hanger. Look at picture of one of the final bird feeders at the bottom of the page.
The seed holder: To attach this container to the wine bottle use wire or a strong thread. The container has to be one inch from the mouth of the bottle (as shown in the picture). This will keep the container about half way full. As the birds eat from the container, the seeds form the bottle will drop, keeping the container always half way full. For these bird feeders shown on this article, the metal supports or frames that hold the seed container are thrift shop finds. The plastic containers come from repurposed food packaging.
Step by step:
Since the birds will be perched on this container while they eat, avoid containers with sharp edges. When attaching the container to the hanger loop, you will need to use three or four wire segments of equal length. One of these wires needs to be easy to disconnect to allow you to refill the bottle. You can make a hook out of one of the wire segments (as shown in the picture above).
Once your bird feeder is finished, use a paper cone or a funnel to fill the bottle with bird seed. Then pick a nice spot in your backyard to hang the bird feeder. Be aware, It might take a few days for the birds to locate and recognize the food, but once they find it, they will come back to it several times a day!
Final products, successful results: