Is there something that squirrels received’t eat?
Many individuals, together with myself, have requested themselves this query! I do know I’ve watched helplessly as squirrels have overtaken my chook feeders. As a result of their massive dimension, they hold the birds away, and my avian buddies watch from a close-by perch as their meals disappears into the stomach of a squirrel.
To not point out that squirrels have various and extremely LARGE appetites. I’m certain you have got seen that chook meals has gotten dearer. It may be onerous to justify the excessive value of chook seed when half of it goes to fattening up squirrels who depart little or no for the birds to eat.
So to assist management the quantity of meals squirrels devour, I made an inventory of 4 varieties that squirrels don’t usually eat at chook feeders. Please notice that these rodents could strive among the meals under or eat them in small portions. However for essentially the most half, they shouldn’t spend hours and hours in your chook feeders should you use these meals.
#1. Safflower Seeds
Safflower seed has gotten the nickname the “miracle seed” as a result of most songbirds will readily eat it, however the majority of squirrels will ignore it! Birds like cardinals, jays, chickadees, and plenty of others don’t have any downside consuming safflower, however squirrels principally don’t contact it.
Since I can’t ask them immediately, I’m not precisely certain why squirrels don’t like safflower, however supposedly it has a bitter style. Mammals are likely to have a better-developed sense of style than birds. I do know that utilizing safflower seeds sounds too good to be true, nevertheless it’s an incredible choice to make use of in your feeders that aren’t squirrel-proof.
Give it a attempt to see if it really works! It’s estimated that 90% of squirrels received’t eat safflower. My apologies you probably have one of many tremendous squirrels that eat safflower all day lengthy with a smile on their face. ?
#2. Nyjer Seeds (thistle)
Nyjer seed, additionally referred to as “thistle,” is a tiny, black seed. Fortunately, it’s not really associated to thistle, so that you don’t have to fret about uneaten seeds rising into an annoying weed. Actually, earlier than it’s offered, Nyjer seeds are sterilized by warmth to allow them to’t germinate and develop.
These small seeds are nice for attracting goldfinches, finches, chickadees, and doves. However as a consequence of their tiny dimension, I’ve by no means seen a squirrel even try and eat one!
To make use of Nyjer seed, you’ll want to buy a feeder that makes a speciality of distributing it. Try the article under for extra info on these chook feeders.
#3. White Proso Millet
Millet is a favourite meals amongst ground-feeding birds. It’s usually not offered individually however is included in MANY varieties of birdseed mixes.
And whereas white millet attracts plenty of birds that take pleasure in eating on the bottom, like juncos, sparrows, blackbirds, and doves, it is not going to enchantment to squirrels. Curiously, millet is taken into account a grain, not a seed, and squirrels don’t hassle consuming this small, onerous meals.
A phrase of warning: Many birdseed mixes comprise purple proso millet, which is purple and a bit smaller than white millet. Floor-feeding birds will eat purple millet, nevertheless it’s not their favourite. So, if attainable, I’d keep away from shopping for a combination that features purple millet.
#4. Any meals coated with HOT PEPPER!
I’ve saved the most suitable choice for final! ?
Imagine it or not, utilizing birdseed coated with scorching pepper is a good way to forestall squirrels from consuming at your feeders! Severely, this technique works. Once I use spicy meals, squirrels (and different mammals) take one whiff and determine to search for meals elsewhere.
And one of the best half is that birds don’t have any downside consuming scorching pepper meals!
The “warmth” you’re feeling in your mouth after consuming a scorching pepper is brought on by a compound referred to as capsaicin. We really feel ache, discomfort, and burning after consuming scorching peppers as a result of capsaicin messes with particular nerve endings in our mouth.
And right here is the loopy factor:
Solely MAMMALS are affected by capsaicin.
Birds don’t have a lot sense of style or scent, so they’re immune. Consequently, they can eat scorching pepper birdseed all day lengthy and don’t have any sick results.
Simply take into consideration this reality for a second. The mammals that may trigger issues at your feeding station embody not solely squirrels but in addition raccoons, chipmunks, rats, mice, and even bears! All these creatures have SUPER delicate noses, so all it takes is one scent, and they need to begin on the lookout for meals elsewhere.
I examined whether or not scorching pepper seeds labored at my feeders. You possibly can watch under to see if it labored or not. ?
And please don’t fear concerning the birds consuming spicy meals, because it’s secure. Merchandise that comprise capsaicin have been in the marketplace for a very long time. There aren’t any studies of birders or ornithologists who’ve spoken concerning the opposed well being penalties for birds.
So the place can you purchase scorching pepper chook meals?
Basically, there are TWO methods to accumulate scorching pepper birdseed:
Possibility #1. Purchase birdseed already coated or infused with capsaicin.
The best factor you are able to do is purchase pre-made scorching pepper birdseed. Simply open the bag and fill your feeders!
Whereas that is simple, it’s additionally comparatively costly. You might be paying for comfort. Beneath is the new pepper birdseed that I’ve used: View Worth – Amazon
Possibility #2. Make your personal scorching pepper birdseed!
Making ready your personal spicy meals is extra time-consuming, however it can prevent cash. I exploit the concentrated scorching sauce pictured under and blend it with shelled sunflower seed.
You should be cautious utilizing these items as a result of it’s scorching and extremely painful to get the concentrated resolution in your face (talking from expertise). Listed below are three issues I try this assist hold the sauce on the seeds and OFF me. ?
- I’ve a 5-gallon bucket with a lid devoted to mixing and storing my selfmade scorching pepper seed. It’s additionally individually marked, so nothing else ever goes into this bucket.
- I’ve a devoted thick picket stake to combine the new sauce into the seeds. The stake is saved in a particular location, so I don’t unintentionally contact it with out gloves.
Earlier than we finish right this moment, I would like you to know that I really do like squirrels, and they’re welcome to eat at my chook feeding station.
However I would like these acrobatic rodents to eat on the bottom. I don’t need them sitting on my chook feeders, scaring away the birds. ?
You could even be capable of watch squirrels consuming proper now BELOW my chook feeders. Try the LIVE cameras which are streaming in my yard HERE.
What meals do squirrels keep away from in your yard?
When you have every other suggestions or feedback, please depart one under!