We have a variety of birdfeeders offering different kinds of seeds and suet. The squirrels have shown little interest in trying to get at the feeder with cracked sunflower seeds so we have not used a baffle to protect it. At any given time, there are several different types of birds at the stations. We almost always see nuthatches, chickadees, titmice and goldfinches when we look out at this feeder. They seem to have no problem sharing.
In fact, we have had some rather unusual visitors to this particular feeder. Here a female Pileated Woodpecker and a female Eastern Towhee are feeding. A bit strange for the woodpecker to go for the seeds at a feeder clearly not well-designed for woodpeckers. And the towhee is usually a ground feeder. But they shared nonetheless.
I mentioned that squirrels have not been particularly interested in this feeder. Well, that was true until this week. And, wouldn't you know? One of the beady-eyed monsters was determined to try some of this seed.
Well, we can put a stop to that. One of my husband's PVC pipe and duct tape baffles now surrounds the pole. When the squirrel tries to climb, the pipe swivels. Not especially pretty, but quite effective. (This is the second generation homemade baffle, by the way. There's always a method for a man to improve any invention using PVC pipe and duct tape.) Since the birdfeeders hang from the upper deck at the back of the house looks aren't terribly important.
In all our years of feeding birds, this is the only truly squirrel-proof feeder we have found. It has a spring tension that shuts off the food at a given weight. We have had others with springs that shut down with the weight of large birds (doves) and squirrels. But in each of those, the squirrel would eventually learn to hang from his hind leg and scoop the seeds without tripping the spring. The current feeder is longer than the squirrel so he can't do that little trick. Well, unless we have a basketball playing squirrel who towers above all the others. So far we have had only normal-sized rascals. This particular feeder is made by Wild Birds Unlimited and is called the WBU Eliminator. (Oh, if it REALLY eliminated the squirrels I would pay a fortune for it.) But it does eliminate the squirrel feeding.
It is almost blasphemous to hate squirrels in Transylvania County. We have white squirrels here and Brevard promotes them as big tourist draws. (Guess the scenery, waterfalls, and national forests aren't enough.) You name any type of tacky souvenir you can imagine. Yep, we've got that with a white squirrel on it.
We occasionally see them in our forest and I don't like them any better than the gray ones. I just call them the beady-eyed white devils.