Hints and Tips

Protect Your Feeders From Squirrels

Do you have problems with squirrels getting onto you feeders, well there's a cheap and easy way without having to pay for squirrel guards or baffles, This is what I didget an old plastic bottle cut 2 inches off the bottom, Then at the other end unscrew the lid and make a small hole in the top so you than thread an 8 inch piece of wire through the hole, Once you have done that at the end that went through the lid bend 2 inches over with a pair of pliers to make a hook do the same at the other end so it can be hung from a branch or feedstation. Replace the lid onto the bottle then feed your feeder up into the bottle,If you find the bottle is cover any of the ports on the feeder take it back out and cut some more off the bottom of the plastic bottle to suite. Make sure you dont hang your feeder to close to other branches or a fence so the squirrel can jump at your feeder, If your hanging it from a feedstation you should be ok ,Hope this has been helpful to you,If you try it please let me know if it's worked for you,It does down at Saltersford Locks.

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Cooking For The Birds

Good Idea For A Fat ball Feeder

Have you ever made a cake for the wild birds that visit your garden well if not heres how too. This is what you need in your ingredients a bag self raising flour, margarine, 1 or 2 eggs, honey, dried fruit, pea nuts and seed if you wish. Sieve your flour, I put two full sieve fulls into my mixing bowl of flour I then add three large chunks of margarine,work this in with your fingers tips till its very fine once thats done add your dried fruit or anything you've got like pea nuts,seeds, chopped up apple or cheese. Once you've done that get a jug crack in an egg or two add to that honey if you want fill the jug half way with cold water whisk that altogether with a fork then add that to your contents in the bowl,make sure it's all mixed together dont leave any dry flour mix in the bowl, Then once thats done add the bowl contents into a tin cover that with a tea towel for 10 - 15 minutes before putting it in the oven middle shelf for 20 - 25 minutes on gas mark 2 Bring out of the oven when brown leave to cool before putting it out on your bird table or on the ground and watch the birds flock.

Once winter is over and you stop feeding the birds, have you ever thought of using your empty fat ball feeder for holding nesting material, cram it full with moss, dog and human hair feathers and wool anything that can be of some use, watch the birds come to collect the material, I've done this for a number of years and it really does work, so have a go and see which birds use it.and enjoy.

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How To Make A Grey Wagtail Box

It's always good to come up with new idea's when it comes to nest boxes and trying to attract birds to nest in them, I have to hold my hands up and say this idea is not mine it belong's to a good friend of mine who first made a Grey Wagtail box and it worked with great success for him his name is Dave Culley of the well known sparrowhawk island as seen on spring watch.Anyway lets get down to it first thing is to get yourself a good sheet of ply, Cut the measurements as follows the lenght of the box needs to be 12inches long or just under by 6inches from top to bottom thats for both the back and the bottom pieces, the two sides are 6 x 6 square,The top is 12inches long by 8inches to give the roof a overhang, finishing off with the front again 12inches long by 3inches this when put together looks like an extra long Robin box. Put everything together with wood glue and panel pins. I will explain the rest underneath the pictures. Instead of using real moss I thought it would be a good idea to use atrificial grass that is permanetly green and will last that bit longer and wont fade.

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Cover box with artificial grass (Note cam inside box on right).

This is what it should look like when put together.

Well camouflaged amongst the ivy and grass , fingers crossed it gets used in 2014.

My Own Design On A Jackdaw Box

Make Your Own Artificial Nest Chamber

Why not try making your own artificial nest chamber to try and attract Robins or Wrens to nest in your garden its so simple and cheap and will only take a couple of hours of your time.

I thought I'd make my own design on a box for Jackdaws for my garden as I always see a couple of pairs hanging around the houses and gardens throughout the year, this is a new venture for me so who knows if a pair will take to a box in the garden or not only time will tell.

All you need is the coconut linning use for hanging baskets, garden wire a pair of scissors and needle and thread, as you know the linner comes in four sections all connected to the base, 1st cut a hole near the top of one of the sections for the entrance,you then need to sow the 4 sections together to make a chamber, after you have done that you will have to use garden wire anker one end of the wire

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How To Set Up Your Own Cams

that cut and thread one end of the garden wire near left side of the entrance hole around the top till you get to the rightside of the hole, thread in and out of the chamber 3 inches apart, repeat this around the bottom with a seperate piece of wire, this is so you can anker the

bracken leaves or moss, you will also need to thred a piece of wire from the inside of the chamber from left side of the back to the right this is so you when the nest in finished you have some way of attaching it to a tree or into a hedge tokeep it steady, you will also need to use something as a roof to protect it from rain getting in through the top, I used an old plastic lid,this needs to be held in place by garden wire also.you can now start attaching bracken leaves or moss using the wire threaded through around the top and bottom, once done find a good place in your garden to put it

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Make Your Own Seed Scoop For Nothing

New Addition Starling Box

Instead of buying a seed scoop why not make your own, all you need is an empty 4 pint milk carton a pair of scissors, felt tip pen and a ruler.

Now with one hand steady the carton and start cutting along the lines on the carton with the scissors cut all the way round till the bottom is free.

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I decided to make a new bird box for my garden, this time for Starlings. Like the RSPB say "GIVE NATURE A HOME" and that is what I did, I made the box and put it on the front of my house backin Septerber of 2014 and by January of this year there was a pair prospecting the box and putting in nesting material.

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Once you have done that, make a hole in the carton with the end of a pair of scissors.

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With ruler and pen draw at an angle from one bottom corner to the end of the label under the bottom of the handle,repeat this on the otherside of the bottle

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And there you go one seed scoop all set now to fill the feeders up in your garden

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