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where to move our feeders? (1 Viewer)

3Italianbirders

Well-known member
Italy
We have always kept our feeders at the back, in front of our garage (where we keep the feed) and they have always been very successful with up to 20 species throughout the cold season and 80-100 birds (mostly Siskins) on the coldest days.

You can have an idea of what they were like in my spring lockdown thread.

Our autumn has been mild so far, but colder weather is on the way and we should start working on the feeders very soon. But we have a problem: the feeders were on a communal area, bordering on two different neighbours’ patches of garden, which were neglected and unused and thus it didn’t matter if at the end of the season they were covered in sunflower seeds husks and bird poo. But, during the spring lockdown everybody and their 4th cousin became keen gardeners, with the only noise heard that of lawn mowers and grass trimmers, with the result that we will have to move our feeders elsewhere as the newly revamped “gardens” are here to stay.

We have 2 or 3 options, none of them ideal - the old setting was perfect, but it’s either one of those or nothing.

In the first photo you can see the general area: the last garage on the left, with the white car in front, is ours, the feeders used to be at the right, basically behind the drainpipe, next to the wall. We have 2 pole feeding stations that we used to anchor to the lower posts of the fence above the wall and also a wooden feeder of the “little house” type mounted on a sturdy wooden post.

In the second photo you can see better the wall: the feeders used to be exactly where the fake grass carpet begins and the wall ends. The carpeted bit belongs to pur upstairs neighbours and the bit behind the fence (where debris from the feeders also fell) to people we know in the yellow building. None of them are bird lovers, they are tolerant but I don’t think they would like the mess associated with the feeders on their new gardens.

Option 1: somewhat inconvenient for us but probably the best one for the birds: putting our feeding stations higher up on the wall, tying them to the fence posts: we would need to climb on the wall (slippery when wet/icy, often in the dark) to refill them up to three times a day, or use a stepladder (we do keep one in the garage). The birds could continue using the hazelnut three and the various fences as a convenient perching site. Also as you can see in photo no. 1 this location is very close to the woodland behind the garages and the feeders would also be visible from the kitchen window.

Option 2: the same place but using a free-standing pole feeding station, which could be anchored to the wall drilling a couple of holes in it and using those screws with a ring on top and a wire, but it would probably still be unstable in high winds. This would save us the hassle of going up and down a ladder but the feeders would be roughly at the same height of the wall, within reach of the neighbourhood cats.

Option 3: maybe the most obvious, but the less feasible would be to install a free-standing feeding station in our tiny strip of front garden (photo #3), but this would mean a longer trip for the birds, less perching space and lugging the feed to and from our cellar, accessible from the front door but still quite a faff.

I would go for Option 1 but are there any other suggestions?

Thanks for the help!

:)
 

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Deb Burhinus

Used to be well known! 😎
Europe
I can’t quite work out what you have exactly in mind vis a vis how they relate to the what is shown in the images. However, one solution I have used for hanging feeders (where I wanted them high off the ground out of the reach of cats but accessible to me to top up and clean) was to use thin rope and make a simple pulley. Like on a window blind. I threw one end of the rope over a high branch (using a high step ladder) and attatched an old dog leash clip onto the end hanging down. I attached the other end onto a lower (easily reachable without standing on anything) branch or hook on the tree or wall. ( If my feeder was going on a wall, I installed a high hanging plant bracket to run the rope through. I would then clip the handle of the feeder onto the dog leash clip. I would get off the ladder and heighten the feeder by the pully, tying it tight round the lower hook/branch.

It was easy to then top up the feeders by lowering them using the pully and when I wanted to clean them or change the feeders, I simply lowered them down and unclipped them from the dog-leash clip.

Example of clip
 

3Italianbirders

Well-known member
Italy
I can’t quite work out what you have exactly in mind vis a vis how they relate to the what is shown in the images. However, one solution I have used for hanging feeders (where I wanted them high off the ground out of the reach of cats but accessible to me to top up and clean) was to use thin rope and make a simple pulley.
A pulley! Why haven't we thought about it! Fantastic. It remains to be seen where we could attach it as the hazelnut tree is not sturdy enough and is behind the fence (branches don't reach our side). But we could use the same idea on our pole feeders... I must have about 30 of those clips (I use them for crafts) at home so that's not a problem, but if you had a photo of one of your pulley-assisted feeders it would certainly help!

Thanks!
 

etudiant

Registered User
Supporter
Maybe just talk to the neighbors before rearranging anything?
I'd think that everyone in these lockdowns would very much enjoy watching the feeders and their visitors.
 

3Italianbirders

Well-known member
Italy
Maybe just talk to the neighbors before rearranging anything?
I'd think that everyone in these lockdowns would very much enjoy watching the feeders and their visitors.
Unfortunately in Italy nobody gives a damn about wildlife in general and birds even less so. It's very uncommon to see bird feeders in gardens and we are generally regarded as weirdos. They may say "oooh cute" but they won't find them cute anymore when they see that their new fake grass carpet has been ruined by bird poo and debris from the feeders and the terracotta fountain (right corner in pic no. 2) is covered in droppings. Or (in the case of the people on the other side of the fence) if their newly found (if sloping) lawn has disappeared under an inch of sunflower seed husks.
If we put the feeding station up on the wall next to the white car the debris will mostly fall on the tarmac (and possibly on the car, but that's our problem!), which will only need sweeping every now and then, and on the other side of the fence in a bit of garden which nobody cares about.
 

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