Best Squirrel Feeders Reviewed & Rated for Quality
So there are dog people, and then there are cat people. And evidently, there are squirrel people. We try to not get involved in political debates, but the pro/anti-squirrel debate may be one of the most divisive in the world. There are folks who’ve spent years watching these furry little beasts devour their cucumbers, their tomatoes, and their bird seed. To them, the sight of a squirrel is enough to get the blood boiling. Then there are those who see them as fluffy, cute little Disney characters. To them, they are animals we must feed and care for. As we said, we’re not getting involved, we cater to everyone.
Squirrels can be an extremely entertaining animal to watch, scurrying about from tree to tree. They are full of energy, so it seems as though it is always playtime for them. Chasing each other through the trees, you may even spot them doing some acrobatic moves should you be lucky enough.
With the presence of squirrels in your yard, will come to some troubles as well. Especially if you are an avid bird watching enthusiast. Squirrels are notorious for raiding your bird feeders, sometimes even damaging them to obtain their contents. You may have taken some preventative measures for “squirrel proofing” your bird feeders. But let’s face it, those squirrels are resilient creatures, known for getting what they want. So what can you do?
I think the phrase “If you can’t beat them join them” says it best when conquering the balance of birds and squirrels in your yard. Now you might be wondering just how you will join them, it is simple, offer those squirrels their own source of food. This can be achieved by placing squirrel feeders in a couple of places throughout your yard. Squirrels by nature will go after the food that is easiest.
- Kaytee Cedar
- Songbird Essentials
- Accoutrements Horse Head
Squirrel feeders come in several style choice, some will offer you a way to put out more than one type of food. You will need a feeder that is simple for the squirrels while offering a certain amount of durability as well. Weather should play a factor in your decision making, so you can leave the feeder out year round. Squirrels are known for the damage they can cause to bird feeders. Knowing that it makes sense for you to find a squirrel feeder that will hold up against squirrel behaviors.
Some will find that the task of researching products before purchasing to be daunting. So they will simply walk into the store and buy the first feeder they see. Only to find out that the squirrel feeder they purchased was destroyed in a week. At this point, you’re wondering, how do I go about researching these products?
It is simple, a buying guide can play a vital role in your shopping experience. You see, we do the research for you, making you a list of the best products we can find. Now there are certain criteria each of these products will need to meet, but don’t worry we will explain that part later. Below you will find our list of ten of the best squirrel feeders available to you.
One thing, if your goal is to feed only squirrels then some of these won’t work for you. But if you’re okay with feeding the whole neighborhood, four-legged or two clawed there’ll be plenty for you here as well. It’s possible to squirrel-proof a bird feeder, but it’s really hard to bird proof a squirrel feeder.
10 Best Squirrel Feeders
1. Kaytee Cedar
Made from cedar, which is known for being the best possible choice of wood for outdoor objects. With natural resistance to moisture and mold, this feeder will last for years to come.
You can pair this feeder with a mix of the squirrel's favorite seeds. Fill the hopper, and you will have hours of fun watching the squirrels play. The lid can be easily lifted, inviting the squirrels into a snack for a while. This will reduce the number of squirrels you will see at your bird feeders.
Cost and Value
This feeder comes in at a great price, considering the materials used to make the feeder. As far as value is concerned, this feeder was built to last. You will get your use out of the feeder, making it worth every penny spent.
- Made from cedar
- Can resist moisture and mold
- Easy to fill
- Can be mounted to a tree or post
- Squirrels will chew the plexiglass
2. Songbird Essentials
This feeder offers no fancy frills but will keep your squirrels filled up on peanuts. Whole peanuts will fill the ring of the feeder, you can be sure that the squirrels will be slowed down some at this feeder. They will first have to learn how to get the peanut out of the feeder.
There is no guessing game to when your feeder will need to be filled, it is made from wire. The wire is then wrapped to create a wreath, which slows the consumption of the food.
Cost and Value
This feeder will reduce the number of peanuts your squirrels can eat, as they will need to work harder to get the peanuts out. With a purchase like this, you will be saving money in the long run as well. That makes this feeder valuable in more ways than one.
- Can see the feeed inside
- Made from wire
- Slows the consumption of food
- Easy to hang
- Can be hard to fill
- Squirrels will sometimes knock feeder to the ground
3. Accoutrements Horse Head
This squirrel feeder is known for creating a lot of laughs, as the way it works makes it appear that the squirrel has a horses head. Hang this feeder where the squirrel will need to stand on its hind legs, place feed into the opening. Then simply sit back and watch the show.
Great Gift Idea
Looking for that perfect gag gift, something that seems quirky, yet still enjoyable. This squirrel feeder offers a little of both of those qualities. This could definitely become the next white elephant gift within your group of family and friends.
Cost and Value
This squirrel feeder was designed to lighten up the atmosphere, so it doesn't hold the potential to last for years. That is fine as this is an extremely low-cost feeder. Get hours of laughs when the squirrels use this feeder.
- Fun to watch
- Easy to fill
- Simple to hang
- Makes a great gift
- Squirrels can easily chew through this
Since this feeder is made from metal, the squirrels will never be able to destroy it with their dreaded chewing. Plastic and wood feeders will often time be destroyed in little to no time at all. An added bonus, the metal has a coating that also allows the feeder to sustain against moisture as well.
We all know corn and peanuts are less expensive options for food when it comes to squirrels. With this feeder, you can offer a mixed variety of foods, like healthy nuts or seeds. This will enhance the diet of the squirrels giving them more value to their nutrition.
Cost and Value
A feeder that can't be chewed apart by the squirrels is a valuable asset to your backyard decor. The squirrels will remain content as long as the feeder has food to offer. You can even mix things up a bit, by offering the squirrels a variety of nuts and seeds.
- Chew proof
- Easy to mount
- Has weather resistance
- Allows for offering a variety of foods
- Top tends to fall closed with squirrels head in the opening
- No room for squirrels to perch
5. Erva Tool & Die Metal
Strength is this feeders key feature, known for being completely chewing proof. Made form a good quality metal, you know those squirrels aren't getting through this feeder with their teeth.
This feeder comes with all the essential items needed for mounting the feeder. You can be sure it will be easy to mount into your tree of choice. When there are no trees in your yard, simply attach this feeder to a post. Once mounted, fill your feeder for hours of enjoyment.
Cost and Value
The amount of durability alone will offset the higher cost for this purchase. You can be sure that this feeder will outlast many of the others on the market to date. That puts this feeder in the valuable category as well.
- Very durable
- Easy to mount
- Comes with the essentials for mounting
- Easily cleaned
- Noise from squirrels lifting the lid can be annoying
6. Spinning Squirrel Feeder Big Wheel
Okay, we kinda hope you don’t have enough squirrels that you’ll need to keep this bad boy loaded up with 9 corn cobs but it’s nice to know, that you can, right? Fact is when the winter has dumped feet of snow in your backyard the local squirrel population might, in fact, appreciate a fully loaded feeder, and hey, it might be fun to watch an entire generation of squirrels try and navigate this boy as it does its spinny thing.
This comes with a simple mounting bracket for a wonder pole or tree. And the four bolts make sure that once this baby is set it’ll stay set. The metal construction also ensures it will last season after season. Truth be told this is just a fun little feeder and we just like to see it do its thing.
Cost and Value
Quite affordable, this Feeders Unlimited product definitely falls into the whimsical line of feeders. That being said it does what it does really well. Plus it’s really well constructed so it should last for years. All in all a great buy.
• 9 Cob Capacity
• Metal Construction
• Fun Turning Motion Draws Squirrels
• Weather Resistant Finish
• The Cobs Fall Off as Feeder Spins
7. Stokes Select Lunch Box
Made from a good quality metal, this feeder can stand up to the weather during all months of the year. There is no need to worry about corrosion, as the feeder has been treated to prevent that too.
You can offer the squirrels a wide range of foods with a feeder design such as this one. The squirrels will feel free to open up the lid to get at the contents inside of the feeder. So feel free to offer them larger variety nuts that are still in the shell.
Cost and Value
This feeder has the muster it takes to be an all year option, making it a valuable purchase. The cost will slightly reflect the materials used to make the feeder, but the amount of time it will last will offset the cost.
- Weather resistance
- Chew proof materials
- Can offer a wide variety of food to the squirrels
- Lid opens easily for the squirrels
- Lid is at a steep angle causing squirrels to slide right off
- Perching area is slightly small
8. Open Platform Squirrel Feeder with Peanuts
Basically a solid cedar box. It’s deep so there’s plenty of room for peanuts. But one thing here, and we’ll talk about this later. There is no drainage so we recommend, first thing, drilling a small hole, or holes in the bottom so when it rains that water will run out. But keep it small enough so only the water gets out, not the nuts.
No Construction Necessary
Hang it and go, for the bored, impatient or elderly this is a great selling point as you just need to find a simple branch or post and you’re good to go. It’s not that heavy either so really any branch should do. Set it and forget it as the saying goes.
Cost and Value
Not too pricey, it drops down firmly in the middle range and we’re okay with that. Add the free peanuts and the easy installation and this one might just be the best way to go. Plus the deep bottom means you won’t have to be refilling it every other day.
• Easy Installation
• Cedar Construction
• Weather Resistant
• Squirrels Enjoy Swinging Motion While Feeding
• No Drainage
9. Pennington Cedar
With features of this design, you can flip the front panel to make the feeder multi-functional. Use it as it comes to feed the squirrels, or flip the front panel to make this an option for feeding the birds too.
This feeder is made from a wood known for to be naturally resistant to moisture. Red cedar will resist the moisture in the air rather than soaking it in. This attribute helps protect the feeder from issues with mold and mildew as well.
Cost and Value
Since this feeder in more like a two-in-one, the potential for the feeder is amazing at the cost. You gain a feeder that can be used for squirrels or bird, which will also resist many factors that the elements will throw at it.
- Holds plenty of food
- Made from red cedar
- Resists moisture
- Not resistant to damage caused by squirrels
10. The Squirrel Shop
This feeder is a fun design, made to look like the picnic table that you might find yourself using in your own backyard. Hang this feeder as a playful addition to your yard. In the center of the table portion of the feeder is where you will find a screw for mounting ears of corn. The bench part is where the squirrels can perch to enjoy their meal.
The manufacturer for this feeder has definitely taken the consumer opinion to heart. Since most complaints about the feeder were gear toward the size of the feeder. That is where the company changed the design, they introduced a larger version, rolling out to market in 2018.
Cost and Value
This feeder was made to please both you and the squirrels that choose to use it. After reading product reviews, in 2018 the manufacturer decided to change the size of the feeder according to the size complaints. That right there is a valuable concept for a company to have.
- Bigger size
- Made from cedar
- Easy to mount
- Provides private space for squirrels
- Wood materials seem to be thin
After finishing the information in this list, you should have gained a good amount of knowledge to help you choose a squirrel feeder. Just be sure that you choose one that can be considered practical for both you and the squirrels. I mean think about it, if those squirrels trash their feeder right off the bat, you are right back to square one. Those squirrels will still be happy, since they will be right back to raiding your bird feeders.
The next section of this buying guide will cover the criteria we used for choosing our top ten picks for squirrel feeders. Here we walk you through some more detailed information for not only choosing a squirrel feeder but how to use one as well. Although squirrels are nowhere near as pick about their feeder placement as birds are. At the end of the criteria section, you will find some of the more commonly asked questions about squirrels and their feeders.
Criteria Used in Choosing the Best Squirrel Feeders
Types of squirrel feeders
There are many different types of squirrel feeders available today, choosing the one that fits your yard doesn’t have to be that stressful. Some types of feeders offer the food in different ways, while others will allow you to offer both whole corn and seeds. Decide whether you want this feeder to blend with the surroundings, or become the next highlight in your yard.
There are two factors that come into play in choosing the type of squirrel feeder best for your situation. The first, how many squirrels are already in your yard, this will help determine the type of feeder by size. Next comes the types of food available to you for feeding the squirrels. If all you can find is seeds or husked corn, then you wouldn’t want a feeder that only holds whole corn cobs. Below you will find the different design types for squirrel feeders.
Table or chair design
A feeder that was designed to mimic a chair or picnic table, this one is a cool attraction to your yard. These are typically spacious enough to fit more than one squirrel at a time. Allowing you to offer the squirrels an entire cob of corn at once, which is sure to keep them busy for a while.
Feeders that swing
Designed to be entertaining for both you and the squirrels, these are fun to watch the squirrels play with. Some simply hang from a chain, leaving the squirrels swaying in the wind. While others will have an arm or two that will move with the weight of the squirrel. Watching the squirrels on a feeder like this one can be hilarious. The squirrel has to really think on its feet, so you may see some flips and tumbles. Some of the designs of the swinging feeder will accommodate more than one squirrel. Those models will also hold larger amounts of food.
Box style Feeders
The design for the box style feeders is to hold a maximum amount of food, making it easier to care for than some of the others. Depending on the size of the box, you can use several types of food choices. The box of these feeders will often time be large enough to hold peanuts, seeds, or a mixture of food. Finding one with a lid will not only help keep birds off the feeder, it will also prolong the life of the food. In some designs, you will find that you can place a whole corn cob, while it still has the box for seeds and nuts.
Platform style feeder
Platform feeders are as simple as they come, some will be able to hold several ears of corn. While others will be a plain tray, holding a mix of seeds and nuts for the squirrels to graze on. These are large enough to service more than one squirrel at a time. As for as work on your part this style will seem like a breeze, it holds plenty, so refilling won’t happen as often. Cleaning will be relatively simple as well, all you need to do is wipe the platform off from time to time.
The oddball designs
Squirrel feeders can sometimes be the white elephant gift you have been looking for, as there are some that have an over the top look to them. Designed to be hilarious, as far as the giver of the gift goes, these feeders are not always functional though. In most cases, they are meant for those intending to mock their friends that constantly struggle to get along with the squirrels.
There are three main types of materials used to make squirrel feeders, each has their own good and bad qualities. Up first, we will take a look at wood. When looking into a feeder made from wood, be sure it is made from cedar, as it holds the highest natural resistance to water. Choosing a squirrel feeder made from any other type of wood, most likely won’t hold up very well. The downside to wood feeders, if left empty for long periods, the squirrels will begin to chew the feeder. Wood will only withstand the abuse from hungry squirrels for a short period of time.
Many of the box feeders you see will be constructed from metal, some of which will have a protective coating to prevent corrosion. Feeders made from metal hold the highest potential in the durability category. Whether you are feeding one squirrel or twenty, they can’t chew through metal, making this the better choice for long-term purchases.
The last option for materials we come to is plastic, this is where the fun designs come into play. Plastic feeders will be less costly than a wooden feeder. They offer a decent amount of durability when it comes to squirrel or weather damage. However, they are nowhere near as durable as those made from metal. When you see those fun looking feeders, those are plastic, as plastic can be formed into any shape.
Placing the squirrel feeder
Honestly, you will be amazed at the number of places for which there are to mount your squirrel feeder. Since squirrels are nowhere near as picky as the birds you feed, placing your squirrel feeder will be easy. One highly recommended aspect, place them away from your bird feeders, doing so will lure them away from the food intended for the birds.
The squirrel feeder you purchase will have the directions you need for how you will mount the feeder. Many will allow you to mount them to such objects like trees or posts. In the event there are no trees in your yard, look for a feeder that can be put on a fence. If your really good at following directions, you can even mount a feeder into a block wall. This is a slightly more complicated process, so most will avoid this mounting style.
When planning your next family picnic at the park, consider bringing a squirrel feeder along. In some areas, squirrels have become so domesticated that they will approach where food is involved. Which can be a frightening experience for both you and your children. Placing a feeder or two around the area you will be using, will draw the squirrels away from you and your food. In this instance, you can just set them on the ground, then collect them before leaving the park for the day.
Reasons to feed the squirrels
When it comes to squirrels, most people only think of the negative sides to them. I mean sure they can be pests at times, but they serve a purpose, just like many other animals on the planet. Aside from this, they can be a great source of entertainment. They are very playful creatures, oftentimes chasing each other, tumbling from tree to tree. Your way of feeding the squirrels is totally up to you, but here are five common reasons for feeding squirrels.
- The most important reason for feeding the squirrels is an environmental purpose. As most of you know, squirrels will bury their food to get ready for the winter months. Unfortunately for the squirrels, they are one of the most forgetful creatures we have. Which means that the nuts and seeds they have placed underground will germinate, spreading trees and greenery. This is essential to the existence of our environment.
- When you notice veggies missing from your garden, you may first blame rabbits. After all, rabbits are notorious for this, but squirrels will do the same. If they can’t find a source of food, they will improvise, digging into your garden to access your veggies. Fruit and nut trees are also a great attractant to squirrels, providing them with a ready food source. Deterring them with a feeder set up close to your garden or trees will keep them from ruining these things. Fruit and nut trees have very sensitive bark, so mounting them right to the tree can damage them. Watch the squirrels, when you find their direction of travel to your trees, you should place a feeder in that path. The feeder will deter them from making into your tree.
- As previously mentioned, squirrels can be extremely entertaining animals. Placing a feeder in your yard will draw them in, giving you the pleasure of watching them. Often times the squirrels will try to show you who is the boss, this can be a hilarious event. If your not sure of the entertainment value squirrels have, look to the internet for video proof.
- Here is some food for thought, since the advances if technology, adults and children alike are glued to screens. This has broken the connection with nature, feeding the squirrels can bring you back to that connection. You can teach young ones the responsibility of caring for a living being. Making them responsible for the filling and care of the feeder, which will help them to value their time outdoors.
- You can use the opportunity to make the squirrels your friends, rather than your enemies. Squirrels by nature are a non-aggressive animal, they turn when they feel threatened. So rather than spending your time chasing them away from your garden or feeders, give them space all their own. This will give the squirrels the opportunity to co-exist with you and the other wildlife in your yard.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is it safe to feed the squirrels?
A: Since squirrels are a more non-aggressive animal in the wild, it is safe to feed them. They are known for their playful attitude, making them very entertaining. Although it is safe to feed the squirrels there are a few aspects to keep in mind. A squirrel can become excited when they see you filling their feeder, so it is possible that they will jump on you. Squirrels are carriers for fleas, which fleas may stick around at your feeders. A proper cleaning regimen can help to negate that issue.
Q: Is it illegal to feed the squirrels?
A: In some states or even cities, there a specific laws set forth for feeding the squirrels. These laws are set forth to lessen the squirrel’s dependency on humans for their food. These laws will also help to prevent unintentional bite accidents, which can happen with an excited squirrel. It is best to check your local laws and regulations for feeding the squirrels, as some areas will have laws, while others will not.
Q: What do squirrels like to eat?
A: You will find that most people will offer the squirrels peanuts or corn, which is fine in smaller portions. But much like us, squirrels will need a balanced diet to remain healthy. Choosing other forms of nuts left in the shell is beneficial to the balance of their nutrition. Some examples of these nuts are acorns, walnuts, and beechnuts. These can also be found out in the woods, making it an inexpensive way to feed the squirrels. Seeds and fruit are a great way to provide the squirrels with nutritional benefits as well. Providing such things can get costly, so mixing them with a lower cost food, like corn can help to keep the cost down.
Q: How many squirrel feeders should you place in your yard?
A: This will depend on the number of squirrels you notice in the area, along with their actions toward each other. Watch how the squirrels tend to treat each other if they seem to act like a “family” they will probably be fine using the same feeder. In some cases, squirrels will travel with each other, while others will become territorial where food is involved. Offering the squirrels a feeder for one, while having another that can accommodate more than one can help with this issue.