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Squirrel reaching out to bird feeder hanging off fence post bracket

What will deter squirrels from bird feeders

Can be a frustrating time to keep squirrels away from bird feeders, but by following a few of my techniques, you may just succeed in doing so.

What will deter squirrels from bird feeders is use of a squirrel baffle if using a bird feeding station, thus keeping the rodents off all feeders in one go. But what could bring you more success is setting up their own, easy to access feeding area. If all else fails, then simply use specialty squirrel proof bird feeders.

It can appear to be an impossible objective in an effort to deter squirrels from any type of bird feeder, and you could actually be right.

So with that in mind, my advice can only apply to hanging bird feeders, or those feeders that are hanging off a bird feeding station on a pole.

To deter squirrels from a bird table, I believe would be a near impossible task.

Having said that, to keep squirrels from bird feeders, I would for the meantime, convert over to a bird feeding station - as its only possible to setup defences on this type of thing.

But first, you may want to remove all bird feeders out of the garden as the squirrel problem will persist until food sources have disappeared.

Then, when its time to add the bird feeders back up in the garden, hopefully you do so with a plan in mind - all while with squirrel proof defences in place and ready to go.

And its here where the squirrel baffle wrapped around the bird feeding station pole would see squirrels unable to access all feeders in one go.

Similarly, this squirrel baffle can be fixed to individual hanging bird feeders via the bracket - as to stop squirrels descending on feeders from above.

What is more important than all this, and the cheapest I might add with little fuss; is simply giving in to the squirrels by feeding them directly in their own little area.

Setup a squirrel only feeding area

Squirrels feeding on top of fence
Seen here is a squirrel proof hanging bird feeder, but it might not be needed if setting up a squirrel only feeding area elsewhere in the garden, just where these squirrels are.

Make no mistake, the possibility of defending your hanging bird feeders by these cunning rodents, isn't going to be an easy one.

In fact, you can expect the beggars to come into contact with the wild bird food contained within the bird feeders - every once in a while - but only after you've setup your defences.

Quite possibly the easiest, no fuss way to deter squirrels from bird feeders is to be sure to setup their own feeding area in your garden.

Granted, it may be ignored by squirrels and yes - this designated feeding area will be used by garden birds as well, but it certainly something to consider.

And here's how its done; simply set up a mix of peanuts on a surface that is within reach of squirrels, while offering no restrictions; as there's not much point really in setting up a squirrel dining area, only for them not being able to reach it.

Ideally, you'd want to set up this feeding area in an area where squirrels mostly enter your garden from - but to place the feeding area outside the garden perimeter would be a better option, yet well away from the wild bird feeders location within the garden.

While squirrels may be happy to use this feeding area only, you will need to keep up by replenishing it regularly as to prevent them exploring other feeding stations, that are intended for garden birds only, and not squirrels.

Cease feeding wild birds

One true way you can keep squirrels out of bird feeders would be, and not making much sense really, is to stop feeding wild birds all together.

I completely understand this advice goes against what you want to achieve, but here me out, as feeding birds is still a possibility.

What you would need to do is indeed remove all traces of wild bird feed held up in hanging bird feeders, the bird feeding station or bird table - then for several weeks all wildlife must go without.

Now, after several days or weeks have passed, you can now re-introduce the bird feed back to once they belong.

I don't believe it would be long for wild birds to return to your garden after this spell of no food source - but they should come back in due course nevertheless.

Squirrel perched on wooden squirrel feeder
To simply pile up peanuts out of your garden perimeter can see squirrels forget about accessing the feeders... or why not consider a specialty squirrel feeder like this one.

However, in this time the squirrels could come back too, but what we are hoping for is the squirrels have soon moved on to other food sources - thus never to return to your bird feeders once they are back up and running.

Make no mistake, squirrels certainly can and probably will return for most people, but its up to you to re-introduce measures of removing food sources in your garden, or apply an anti-squirrel bird feeder policy.

To do that you would of course need to buy a squirrel baffle for the bird feeding station only, or simply switch over to one or several specialty squirrel proof bird feeders.

Fix a squirrel baffle

I believe its safe to say many of you would probably be hanging up bird feeders via a reliable bird feeding station with many bird feeders hanging of its brackets.

And if this doesn't apply to you, do be sure to move on to the next topic as use of a squirrel baffle only works on a bird feeding station pole or individual feeders.

So as I am talking about squirrel baffles that fix to a bird feeding station pole, you'd be glad to know must have a universal connection; meaning any one squirrel baffle dome can fix to any brand name feeding station.

Little tricky for certain baffles, but its only a matter of re-sizing the width to create a tight fit.

You would need to fix the squirrel baffle dome as high up the bird feeding station pole as possible, or else you'd simply see squirrels jump on top of it - and they are good jumpers where food is involved.

Likewise, you need to make sure the squirrel baffle is not so high up the pole, the squirrels can simply feed out of hanging peanut or suet feeders by simply reaching out to them, thus being no point in using the baffle at all.

Similarly to a squirrel baffle that must be fixed to the bird feeding station pole, there is such thing as a hanging squirrel baffle that is fixed just about any bird feeder type.

Its therefore possible to see the squirrels climb up the bird feeding station pole, around the bracket to climb down on the feeder - only to reach the squirrel baffle which will stop them in their tracks.

Deter with squirrel proof feeders

Classic hanging bird feeders for suet, seeds or peanuts tend to be used by most people - including myself I might add - who don't have to worry about squirrels.

But rest assured as there is a solution for anyone who is having trouble deterring squirrels on a daily basis.

And that is with the use of a clever yet simple squirrel proof bird feeder, though a focus on one of the best peanut proof peanut feeders should be a priority, as its the food type what squirrels will be focused on reaching.

How it works is it takes any traditional bird feeders, and centre's it in the middle of a metal cage shroud that is not only impenetrable by squirrels, but the food is far out of reach from any angle.

Squirrel clinging to hanging peanut feeder
If only this classic peanut feeder hanging off a wall bracket was surrounded in a cage, like a squirrel proof feeder, as this one would stand no chance of reaching the nuts.

While its important to use a squirrel proof bird feeder that uses narrow gaps, thus only allowing small garden birds to pass through - small, underweight or young squirrels can easily slip through in-between the bars of these feeders.

What will deter squirrels from bird feeders the best, or at least these kinds of squirrel proof bird feeders, evolves overtime as you go on to refine your anti-squirrel techniques.

There is no such thing a squirrel proof bird feeder that actually is squirrel proof, but it certainly can reduce larger numbers.

No ending their arrival

In all honesty, there really is no way I can guarantee you will seen 100% success as you seek to deter squirrels from bird feeders.

Clever as they are athletic, so in time any squirrel proof setup in place would in time be overcome by the most determined lot.

But to follow a few simple, accessible to everyone anti-squirrel techniques for free or at cost - you will reduce the number of squirrels accessing the wild bird feed.

Begin with a squirrel proof baffle fixed to a bird feeding station pole if this is what you have in your garden - then double this up with a squirrel proof bird feeder just to double up your defences.

Sure squirrel proof bird feeders do work for the most part, but its not uncommon to see the rodents still access the best setup.

You probably will never be able to stop or massively reduce the squirrel population entering your garden, but it certainly will help to remove all food sources.

In doing so will see wild birds go without, but this is only for a short time as you wait until its safe to slowly re-introduce bird feeders, intended for garden birds only.


What will truly deter squirrels from bird feeders is indeed preventing the need for squirrels to come to your garden in the first place.

With that in mind, I recommend you remove all food sources out of your garden; including the possibility of packing away bird feeders, the bird feeding station and bird table.

Over the next couple of weeks, squirrel numbers will disappear from your garden as they seek for food sources elsewhere.

With no sign of a single squirrel, you can now introduce the wild bird feed back in your garden after days or weeks - all while making sure squirrels are staying away.

Its counter-productive to remove bird feeders as garden birds can come to depend on them, but before you know it - hopefully they will return in no time at all.

If you don't want to remove bird feeders, then simply swap out classic bird feeders for specialty squirrel proof bird feeders, as they are made to stop squirrels coming into contact with the feed inside them.

But to stop squirrels climbing up the bird feeding station all together to reach all bird feeders, make use of a simple to install squirrel baffle which fixes to the pole.

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