Monday, May 23, 2011

Feeding the Squirrels

Today I thought I would share a tutorial on how to attract fun loving, voracious squirrels to your backyard. Step 1: Hang a bird feeder. Step 2: Fill with bird seed. There you have it! Now you can enjoy minutes of fun as the squirrels devour all the expensive bird seed you have provided for your fine feathered friends. What can take days for the birds to eat, can be gone in an hour as your squirrel friend puts out the call to all his buddies that there is an all you can eat buffet in your backyard!

Now I will admit to having a bit of a love-hate relationship with the squirrels. If you know me well you know I love animals. Pretty much any animal. Except possums. I detest possums! But that is a different story altogether. I like squirrels. They really are cute and fun to watch, and I am happy to feed them, just not my bird seed. This results in my trying to find various ways to outwit them. I will tell you right now that if you are sitting around contemplating the superiority of your human brain; you need only to take on a squirrel to be brought down a notch!

I have one squirrel feeder and another specifically for squirrels and obnoxious Blue Jays. I feed them nuts, cracked corn, bread and stale cereal. The love it! Until it is gone, then on to the bird seed. A couple of years ago I bought a very nice squirrel proof feeder. It is now the squirrels feeder of choice. I tried switching over to safflower seeds. It worked! The squirrels wouldn't touch it. Neither would the birds. I suppose I could take all my feeders out from under the tree and put them on poles in the middle of the yard. But then I couldn't see them from my window. Same story with squirrel baffles. It would obstruct the view, and they are ugly as well. Besides I have seen pictures of smart squirrels outwitting baffles.

So today I am trying yet another squirrel deterrent. I have added cayenne pepper to my bird seed. According to various wild bird sources, it doesn't harm or bother the birds, but the squirrels don't like the smell. We'll see. I just keep remembering how when I was little my mom put hot pepper juice on my fingernails to keep me from biting them. All it accomplished was that I was probably the only four year old in town eating hot peppers at the dinner table. With my luck my the squirrels will start requesting cayenne pepper on all of their food!
Have a wonderful day! ~Marla 


  1. Marla, I used cayenne pepper to keep cats out of our rosebushes when we lived in California!! It worked like a charm. Hope it works on the squirrels!!

  2. I am sad to report that my squirrels have a taste for cayenne pepper :(