Squirrels are the bane of nearly all bird enthusiasts.
We buy bird feeders primarily for birds and they allow you to see some lovely species, like cardinals, finches and a host of other wild birds, not for squirrels to come along and ruin the party. It’s not that squirrels are terrible by nature, but they are more than willing to take advantage of your generosity. That’s why you need the best squirrel-proof bird feeders to keep them at bay.
They use intelligent designs to get around the versatility and ingenuity of squirrels, ensuring that only birds visit your bird feeder. None of these are meant to be dangerous to squirrels, you don’t want to hurt them, so they’re as safe as they are effective.
- For a full list of the best bird feeders of all types, see our best picks list
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- Prefer wood? Try these wooden bird feeders out for size
Why are Squirrels Attracted to My Bird Feeder?
In general, most people wouldn’t mind if squirrels only took a tiny bit of food, but it rarely works out this way.
- Squirrels are hungry, way hungrier than their tiny bodies would suggest.
- They love sunflower seeds, peanuts, corn, and other common items in bird food.
- They exhibit food dominance and destructive behavior.
- They’ll eat you out of house and home and they might even destroy your bird feeder.
It won’t stop there, many squirrels exhibit learning behavior, if they see one squirrel raiding your feeder, then others may join in. That’s why it’s so important to get the best squirrel-proof bird feeders as squirrels are incredibly intelligent.
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Best Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder Reviews
1. Droll Yankees Yankee Flipper 4-Port Feeder
You might be wondering how is this different from any other bird feeder. It looks like a conventional tube bird feeder. The surprise is in the little metal ring at the bottom. It will spin whenever a squirrel tries to grab it. Since the feeding ports are right near the ring, the squirrel will have no choice but to perch here.
The spinning will knock the squirrel off long before it gets any food. The best thing is that the ring reacts to weight. It won’t spin from birds, but it will immediately react from squirrels grabbing or perching on the ring. It will only take a few seconds to knock off even the most persistent squirrels.
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The feeder is battery powered and has an AC/DC adapter. You can fit 5 lbs of birdseed in the 17-inch tube and there are 4 seed ports. The powder-coated metal base and cap are highly durable, and the UV-stabilized polycarbonate tube allows you to see how much birdseed is left. For best effect, you can hang it from a squirrel proof bird feeder pole, for double protection.
- Ring spins to keep squirrels away
- Weight activated, birds are safe
- 5-pound capacity
2. Woodlink Absolute II Squirrel Resistant Bird Feeder
The Woodlink Absolute II is one of the best squirrel-proof bird feeders. Made with a powder-coated steel body, this durable feeder will stand up to persistent and destructive squirrels. The lid is locked so squirrels can’t remove it, but you’ll have no problem unlocking it. The feeder is simple to fill and holds 12lbs of bird seed.
The adjustable weight bar drops when squirrels step on it. This blocks them from accessing food. The bar’s sensitivity can be adjusted so you can also prevent larger birds from feeding if needed. This is a double-sided feeder, so plenty of birds can perch, and it measures 3.5 x 16 x 11.25 inches.
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The no-waste baffle prevents birds from spilling seeds, ensuring you don’t waste any food while also preventing animals from feeding around the area. You can hang or pole mount this feeder with the included hanger or 5ft pole.
- Adjustable bar, drops to prevent food access
- Made from powder-coated steel
- 12lbs of bird seed, double-sided feeder
3. Brome Squirrel Buster Plus Bird Feeder
Brome has built a reputation for simplicity and highly durable materials. This squirrel-proof bird feeder features four perches, eight feeding ports, measures 4 x 4 x 20 inches, and a 2.4lbs capacity for thistle or nyjer seeds. Unlike many other feeders on this list, this one is specifically made for finches. Birds that visit this feeder include the American Goldfinch, Purple Finch, and Pine Siskin.
- For feeding birds with Suet, we suggest trying these Suet Bird Feeders designed specifically for that
Made from RoxResin, this material is chew proof, rust proof, and waterproof. The weight of squirrels and other pests will close the feeding ports, denying squirrels access to food. It won’t be long before squirrels move on to easier bird feeders. There’s no need to adjust the parts, the feeder works with ease. Seeds will stay clean and fresh with the seed ventilation system.
If you specifically want to try and attract finches to visit your feeder, then this squirrel-proof bird feeder is ideal. It only holds nyjer seeds or thistle, plus the squirrel-proof defense will keep pests at bay.
- Holds 2.4lbs of nyjer seeds/thistle
- Chew proof, waterproof, rust proof material
- Made specifically for finches
4. Roamwild PestOff Squirrel Proof Bird Feeder
The Roamwild PestOff Feeder is one of the simplest squirrel-proof bird feeders on this list, but also one of the most effective. Its primary feature is the double feeding ports on both sides of the feeder. The perch near the ports is spring loaded and will close when a squirrel, rat, large bird, or other pest tries to steal food. No adjustments are necessary and the feeder measures 21 x 8 x 8 inches.
With a 3lbs capacity and a thick polycarbonate body, squirrels won’t be able to crack through and steal food. Metal is used at the top and bottom for added protection. The ports are large to prevent seed clogging, and there is a weather guard so seeds are dry and fresh.
This is the best squirrel-proof bird feeder if you want simplicity. It’s easy to fill, clean, and maintain. Plus, it keeps away more than just squirrels while giving songbirds a place to perch and eat.
- Strong metal and polycarbonate body
- No adjustments necessary
- Keeps away more than just squirrels
5. Wild Bill’s 8 Station Squirrel Proof Bird Feeder
Looking for a larger, stronger squirrel-proof bird feeder? Wild Bill’s 8 Station Feeder is the perfect solution. There are eight stations for birds to perch and feed, ensuring you can satisfy a whole flock with ease. From cardinals and robins to jays and chickadees, you’ll have plenty of colorful birds using your feeder. The feeder measures 24 x 12 x 12 inches and is made from plastic and metal.
This is a true squirrel-proof bird feeder as it gives squirrels a little shock when they attempt to raid the feeder. It doesn’t hurt or injure them, it simply scares them away. Think of the classic Operation game. It’s all powered by a 9V battery. It’s weight-activated, so birds will be just fine.
With many feeding ports and a shocking defense mechanism, this does a wonderful job of deflecting squirrels and other pests. You can also hang this feeder or mount it on a pole.
- Eight feeding stations
- Shocks squirrels and makes them run
- Hang or pole mount
6. Brome Squirrel Solution Bird Feeder
Looking for a bird feeder that’s friendly to jays, finches, woodpeckers, and cardinals while resisting squirrels and other pests? This is one of the best squirrel-proof bird feeders if you’re looking for a simple but effective feeder. It measures 4 x 4 x 20 inches and includes a seed ventilation system to keep seeds fresh. You can load 3.4lbs of birdseed.
There are multiple feeding ports, each with their own perch. The feeding ports automatically close whenever a squirrel or large pest lands on the perch. There’s no need for adjustment, the feeder works all on its own. Squirrels will have a hard time getting through the chew-proof material. Plus, the feeder can be dismantled by hand for easy cleaning.
From the waterproof, chew proof, and rust proof material to the simplicity of the squirrel-proofing, this feeder ensures many songbirds will visit your yard. It’s an easy feeder that requires no extra work.
- Chew proof, waterproof, and rust proof material
- Simple mechanism, requires no extra work
- Holds 3.4lbs of birdseed
7. Squirrel-X5 Squirrel Resistant Bird Feeder
The Squirrel-X5 includes six feeding ports with adjustable perches and metal port hoods to prevent moisture from ruining your birdseed. This bird feeder holds 3.7 pounds of birdseed and has a large opening for easy filling. The metal top locks in place after you’re done filling the feeder.
The perches are spring-loaded and close the feeding ports whenever a squirrel stands on them. This prevents squirrels from stealing food while ensuring that many songbirds can feed in peace. You can also adjust the spring tension to allow for lighter or heavier weights. The feeder measures 20.5 x 7 x 7 inches.
While specifically made for squirrels, the adjustable tension allows this feeder to prevent rats, mice, and larger birds from stealing food as well. While die-cast metal parts and six feeding ports, this is a simple and elegant bird feeder that many songbirds can enjoy. Load it high with birdseed and watch birds flock and gather.
- Die-cast metal top and bottom
- Six feeding ports, spring-loaded perches
- Holds 3.7lbs of birdseed
8. Brome Squirrel Buster Standard Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder
With its lifetime guarantee and many features, the Brome Squirrel Buster is a fantastic squirrel-proof bird feeder that allows many songbirds to rest and eat. From Finches and Nuthatches to Woodpeckers and Cardinals, this is meant for a variety of colorful species. You can place ¾ quarts of seeds and the feeder measures 5 x 5 x 21 inches.
The feeding ports will close whenever a squirrel or other pest steps on the perch. On top of that, the exposed feeder parts are made from a chew-proof material called RoxResin and the tube is designed to prevent climbing. This makes the feeder waterproof, rustproof, and UV stabilized. Seed ventilation prevents seeds from quickly rotting.
This feeder is simple to easy, requires no additional work, and uses ingenious engineering to prevent squirrels from raiding the food. If you want a simple and simply brilliant feeder, then the Brome Squirrel Buster fits the bill.
- Chew-proof material
- Negative grip tube
- Attracts various songbirds
9. Perky-Pet Squirrel Be Gone II Feeder
The Perky-Pet 339 looks like a cozy home and is one of the best squirrel-proof bird feeders available. It has a large capacity and weight-activated protection against squirrels. Birds can access seeds from the front, but things are much different for squirrels.
The perch is set to drop from a squirrel’s weight and close the feeding ports. They’ll have a difficult time breaking through the material since it’s all metal. The roof easily opens to fill the feeder with seeds, but not so easily that a squirrel can open it. The Perky-Pet holds 8lbs of seeds and measures 11.82 x 14.4 x 10.71 inches.
You can pole mount or hang this squirrel-proof feeder. This is an ideal feeder for robins, cardinals, jays. Not only does it have a large capacity, but the design is cozy and the squirrel proofing is ingenious.
- Weight-activated, anti-squirrel technology blocks the feeding ports
- Durable, all-metal constructions
- Holds 8lbs of seeds
10. Homestead Super Stop-a-Squirrel Bird Seed Feeder
The Homestead squirrel-proof bird feeder is made from highly durable materials like stainless steel while restricting both squirrels and larger birds from feeding. This bird feeder is meant for smaller birds like chickadees and cardinals. The bird feeder measures 10 x 11.5 x 12.8 inches and holds 11lbs of seed.
The defense mechanism is based on weight. The adjustable perch bar will drop when larger birds or squirrels land on them. This will block the feeding ports so that no seeds can be accessed. Homestead is a pioneer in squirrel-proof feeders and are recognized for their innovations.
This comes with a steel hanger and can be pole mounted on 1-¼” diameter poles, additionally the mounting hardware is included for free. A clear window in the front lets you see how much food is left in the feeder. The storm panels on the side are weatherproofed against rain, wind, and snow.
- Holds 11lbs of seed
- Perch bar drops to prevent squirrels and larger birds from feeding
- Made from heavy-duty steel
Frequently Asked Questions
How to Squirrel Proof a Bird Feeder?
There are several tips for squirrel proofing an existing feeder and even providing extra protection for squirrel-proof feeders.
- Adding a baffle makes it much harder for squirrels to reach the feeder.
- You can make a baffle from plastic, metal, or any other material. Even soda bottles can work as squirrels have a difficult time climbing on plastic.
- You’ll want the right pole to prevent climbing.
- Squirrels are great at climbing wood and most metals, but copper and PVC are difficult for their little paws.
- Another trick is to suspend the feeder between two poles with a wire.
- Line the wire with plastic bottles so that squirrels can’t cross the wire.
How to Hang a Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder?
We’ll cover this from a squirrel-proofing perspective.
- In general, you can hang most feeders from a hook, pole, or anywhere a mount can be placed.
- However, hanging a bird feeder to resist squirrels requires some forethought.
- Known as the Rule of 5-7-9, this helps you determine the best place to hang your feeder.
- Squirrels usually can’t jump higher than 5 feet, more than 7 feet from a building or tree, and rarely drop more than 9 feet.
Keep these numbers in mind and you’ll find the right place for your feeder.
How do Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeders Work?
Most of these feeders are just like conventional units, but with a few extra features.
The most common squirrel-proofing involves denying access to food, there is typically a bar or perch that the squirrel must stand on to reach the birdseed. When they do, their weight pushes the unit down and closes the food port, this prevents the squirrel from accessing the food.
Another method is by shocking the squirrel. The shock is low, so it won’t hurt them. It’s like the shock you get from playing Operation, jarring, but not dangerous.
These feeders require a power source like a battery or being plugged into an outlet, there are also rotating bird feeders that have perches that will rotate when a squirrel or larger pest stands on them. The rotation is fast enough to force them off the feeder, but not enough to hurt them.
Bird feeders that prevent access to squirrels are no gimmick, they do really work and over the years they have only got more intuitive with their designs.
Improving the experience for the birds while making it harder for the squirrels to nab the food.
Just take your time to consider size of the feeder, which birds you might prioritize in attracting and also your budget. The feeders range from $35-$120 just for a heads up.