Tuesday, January 5, 2010

A pie plate, wire & a thistle feeder

I always notice a lot of black thistle seeds? hulls? on the ground under these feeders.

So, I concocted a home remedy this morning.

Place your thistle feeder in the center of an aluminum pie plate.
Make small holes on either side of the bottom perch
(or near the bottom holes in a different brand of feeder).

I used picture hanging wire (it's all I could find) and cut two nice lengths.
I held the wire over the bottom perch and threaded each end through a hole.


Then I twisted the wires together under the pie plate.


Tah-dah! A Seed Catcher.


Barring a strong wind, this may help feed a couple more birds...

or not.

We'll see.

:-)


Last minute thought: I'm going to drill holes through terracotta pot trays and replace the aluminum foil pans. I think the extra weight might be more stable should a bird land in the tray. It might also not tip as easily in a breeze. What do you think??


Nothing "shady" about this!
Have a great day!

15 comments:

Noelle said...

I love this idea. I do not always like having a lot of seed hulls underneath the feeder. I need to try this :-)

Nutty Gnome said...

Brilliant - you always come up with such creative answers to these thorny little questions Shady ...you're a star!

Rosemary said...

Shady what a great idea!

Jim Groble said...

What a great idea!

jim

Shady Gardener said...

Thanks all. We'll see if this works. Aluminum pie plates are pretty lightweight. I'm thinking I actually might drill holes through terracotta flower pot trays. They might not swing as heavily, should a bird land on them...

:-) Ha! My word verification is "crafts." Guess that's appropriate!

Grace Peterson said...

Hi SG~~ Great idea. I'll be interested to see how the terra cotta idea pans out. [Pun entirely intended.]

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Grace! :-) Pun accepted and appreciated! ha!

Catherine@AGardenerinProgress said...

Great idea! For some reason birds rarely visit my thistle feeder, but this could work under other types too it looks like.

fairegarden said...

It seems good to me as is, Shady. Do you notice the plate tipping a lot? Maybe a couple more pieces of wire centered to make it more stable. I think the terracotta would be too heavy for the pole. We just use the nylon socks prefilled with thistle seed, there doesn't seem to be any debris from them. But you already have those nice feeders....
Frances

Shady Gardener said...

Hi Catherine... Until this year, I've had a huge feeder created by Mr. Shady himself. It had 8 ports and sat atop a pipe. Underneath the pipe (I made a hole in the center) sat a children's saucer sled with a doohickey that you buy at the hardware store - it fits around the pipe and has a screw to hold it in place. That held up the saucer.

It was a GREAT solution to spilled seed - and lots of birds sat in the saucer to eat, also! :-)

Frances, Hopefully you'll see today's follow-up. The plates don't tip as much as the whole kit'nkaboodle would tip with much weight springing from the plate, I think. However, a smallish terracotta tray might be just the ticket.

I've used those great thistle socks at school, but out here the squirrels rip them to shreds. Ugh!

Thanks for all the great suggestions, though! (Our Yankee Flipper hangs from a tall shepherd's hook. It even holds 5# of seed!) :-) I did notice that the hook is leaning slightly...

Kate said...

Hi, Shady!
Love this. I'm on a pretty tight budget. Thistle is kind of expensive and I, too, see a lot of waste. I will definitely give this a try. :)

Chad and Brandy said...

That is a good example of backyard ingenuity. If the birds at your house are like the ones here, they will not care what you use to serve the seed, as long as you still serve it.

Shady Gardener said...

Kate, Let me know how this works for you! :-)

Chad and Brandy, absolutely true. :-)
How's your weather?

Rosey Pollen said...

I am going to have to try this. Thanks for the birding tips. I am getting some thistle seed next time I am out.
Rosey

B said...

Thanks!!! I'll remember that when I put mine up!