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10 Best Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeders in 2022 – Reviews & Top Picks

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bird eating on Perky-Pet GSB00344 Green Seed Ball Wild Bird Feeder

Feeding native birds in your backyard is one of life’s true joys, especially in a modern world where technology has largely separated us from nature.

It’s no wonder that squirrels raiding your bird food and scaring away birds are incredibly annoying. These crafty little animals are known to use their surprising intelligence to by-pass anti-squirrel measures.

However, technology can also bring you closer to nature with these perfectly designed squirrel-proof feeders. If squirrels getting into your wild bird seed is driving you absolutely nutty, try one of these ten products, as each is backed with reviews from happy backyard birders.

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A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2022

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Droll Yankees Sunflower Domed Cage Wild Bird Feeder Droll Yankees Sunflower Domed Cage Wild Bird Feeder
  • Free-flowing seed
  • Powder-coated metal
  • Removable tube for easy cleaning
  • Best Value
    Second place
    PetFusion Tranquility Window Bird Feeder PetFusion Tranquility Window Bird Feeder
  • Cheap
  • Offer close viewing
  • Pitched roof for rain protection
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Droll Yankees Classic Sunflower or Mixed Seed Bird Feeder Droll Yankees Classic Sunflower or Mixed Seed Bird Feeder
  • Large capacity
  • 6 portholes for feeding
  • UV resistant
  • Perky-Pet Panorama Bird Feeder Perky-Pet Panorama Bird Feeder
  • Accessible to birds of all sizes
  • Locking cap for security
  • Affordable
  • More Birds Squirrel-Proof Double Suet Bird Feeder More Birds Squirrel-Proof Double Suet Bird Feeder
  • Waterproof top
  • Suited for small birds
  • Powder-coated steel
  • The 10 Best Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeders

    1. Droll Yankees Sunflower Domed Cage Wild Bird Feeder – Best Overall

    Droll Yankees Domed Cage Sunflower Seed Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Coated metal, plastic
    Capacity: 1 lb

    Our choice for the best overall squirrel-proof feeder was this ingenious design from Droll Yankee. The domed cage has a free-flowing seed feeder tube in the middle, with 1.5-inch openings. If you want to attract larger birds, these gaps are too small but great if you want to keep big birds out.

    This feeder is built to withstand the battering outdoors. The powder-coated metal protects the structure and is safe if squirrels chew on it out of frustration! The inner tube is UV resistant, protecting the seeds from UV damage to their nutrient makeup.

    Pros
    • Free-flowing seed
    • Powder-coated metal
    • Removable tube for easy cleaning
    • UV resistant seed storage
    Cons
    • Not suited for larger birds

    2. PetFusion Tranquility Window Bird Feeder – Best Value

    PetFusion Tranquility Window Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Acrylic
    Capacity: 1 lb

    This basic feeder does not look like it will keep squirrels out on first inspection. Its open design offers no protection from invasions. However, the trick with window-mounted feeders is the positioning. If placed in the middle of a large window, squirrels cannot climb the glass and get inside.

    For that reason, we chose this nifty product from PetFusion as the best squirrel-proof bird feeder for the money. Clever use of a simple product can save you money purchasing expensive squirrel-proof feeders. This will only work if you have suitable large windows!

    Pros
    • Cheap
    • Offer close viewing
    • Pitched roof for rain protection
    Cons
    • Not 100% squirrel proof
    • Skittish birds may be tentative to use

    3. Droll Yankees Classic Sunflower or Mixed Seed Bird Feeder – Premium Choice

    Droll Yankees Classic Sunflower or Mixed Seed Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Steel, plastic
    Capacity: 4 lbs

    Our premium choice is this sleek feeder from Droll Yankees. Its steel construction holds up against squirrel chewing and offers an aesthetically pleasing design. The steel and UV-resistant plastic tubing doesn’t show signs of aging with use, so while it is expensive, it stands up to the test.

    Its large capacity and multiple portholes allow for a bird feast in your garden without the disruption of unwelcome guests. The porthole design does not offer a catchment for dropped seeds so squirrels can forage on the ground below.

    Pros
    • Large capacity
    • 6 portholes for feeding
    • UV resistant
    • Sleek design
    Cons
    • Requires assembly
    • Costly

    4. Perky-Pet Panorama Bird Feeder

    Perky-Pet 1 312 Panorama Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Plastic
    Capacity: 2 lb

    Hundreds of happy customers highly rate this feeder from Perky-Pet. It’s excellent value considering the cost and the efficiency of the product. The sleek baffle and locking system keeps squirrels from helping themselves to the seed storage.

    Since the feeder is open, not covered in wire, birds of all sizes can access the seed. However, the seed tray itself is shallow, and reviewers say the hulls of larger seeds can block the free-flowing system quickly. It’s best for smaller seeds and millet or regular cleaning.

    Pros
    • Accessible to birds of all sizes
    • Locking cap for security
    • Affordable
    Cons
    • Clogs easily
    • Lock is loose

    5. More Birds Squirrel-Proof Double Suet Bird Feeder

    Squirrel-X Squirrel Resistant Double Suet Feeder

    Material(s): Steel
    Capacity: 2 suet cakes

    Opportunistic squirrels don’t just love loose seeds; they also like to raid nutritious suet cakes. This feeder from More Birds can hold two suet cakes and is surrounded by a double wire cage, allowing smaller birds to be sheltered from predators as they eat.

    One reviewer described this feeder as “Fort Knox for bird food,” which is a glowing review, especially considering this product is on the cheaper end of the scale. However, don’t expect your suet to be safe from bears, as the steel is putty in their paws. But this isn’t a list of bear-proof bird feeders, right?

    Pros
    • Waterproof top
    • Suited for small birds
    • Powder-coated steel
    Cons
    • Not suited for seed

    6. Droll Yankees Yankee Tipper Collapsing Bird Feeder

    Droll Yankees Yankee Tipper Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Plastic, coated metal
    Capacity: 5 lbs

    The design of this feeder from Droll Yankees is deceiving. Its basic design looks like it won’t have a chance at keeping a determined squirrel away. But when a squirrel hops aboard the tray, its weight activates a tipping mechanism causing them to drop away. Not only is this effective, but it’s enormously entertaining.

    Medium-sized birds such as jays and woodpeckers won’t set this delicate system off. The feeding holes are small-sized, and large sunflower seeds tend to block up the flow. Additionally, the price tag is on the higher end of the scale. However, customers in the review section have only had to replace their feeder after a whopping 20 years.

    Pros
    • Weight activated tipping
    • Mechanically powered (no batteries needed)
    • Large capacity
    Cons
    • Clogs with larger seeds
    • Costly

    7. Perky-Pet Green Seed Ball Wild Bird Feeder

    Perky-Pet GSB00344 Green Seed Ball Wild Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Mesh
    Capacity: 1 lb

    For something so simple (and cheap), this mesh ball feeder from Perky-Pet does the trick. It doesn’t have any fancy bells or whistles keeping squirrels out, just basic physicals. The ball design is complicated for squirrels to hang onto for prolonged periods, and the mesh sizing is too small for them to get any significant seed.

    While they may not save every seed from a squirrel, they won’t be raided completely. The ergonomic ball design is perfect for warblers and other fluttering foragers to perch on to naturally eat.

    Pros
    • Perfect for warblers
    • Cheap
    • Durable
    Cons
    • Not 100% squirrel proof
    • Only for small birds

    8. Squirrel-X by More Birds X5 Squirrel Resistant Bird Feeder

    Squirrel-X by More Birds X5 Squirrel Resistant Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Coated metal
    Capacity: 3 lbs

    This product from Squirrel-X is just as high-tech as the name implies. The design features an adjustable tension rod in the center that lets you adjust the size of the feeding area so you can choose what size of bird to let in. Additionally, the perch lengths are adjustable.

    These features are neat, but the more moving parts an item has, the more things there are to break. The feeding ports don’t allow squirrels to feed on them, but the sleek design still lets them clamber all over it, causing the potential for damage and scaring away birds.

    Pros
    • Adjustable feeder size
    • Adjustable perches
    Cons
    • It doesn’t stop squirrels climbing on it
    • Too many components

    9. Tucson Bird Designs Songbird Platform Bird Feeder

    Tucson Bird Designs Songbird Platform Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Wood, coated metal
    Capacity: 4 lbs

    While this product states it is not squirrel-proof, many reviewers beg to differ, saying their squirrels are unable to balance and access the seeds. However, for full security, a squirrel baffle should be purchased alongside this feeder.

    We like this feeder’s minimalistic and natural design and its large capacity. However, the feeder does not have built-in perching for ease of access, and it does not come apart, making cleaning difficult.

    Pros
    • Natural design
    • Large capacity
    Cons
    • Requires an additional baffle
    • No perches
    • It doesn’t come apart

    10. Perky-Pet Squirrel-Be-Gone Wild Bird Feeder

    Perky-Pet 336 Squirrel-Be-Gone Wild Bird Feeder

    Material(s): Aluminum, plastic
    Capacity: 2 lbs

    This feeder from Perky-Pet utilizes sneaky weight physics to close off the feeder under a squirrel’s weight. The outer metal casing moves independently from the plastic feeder inside. When triggered by weight, the casing moves down, blocking off the seed source.

    This generally works well, but some reviewers say their tricky squirrels have worked out how to access the seed by holding on to fixed areas of the feeder. A baffle above will likely help to resolve this issue.

    Pros
    • Weight sensitive casing
    • Six U-shaped perches
    Cons
    • Poor quality springs
    • Squirrels may figure out how to work it

    Buyer’s Guide – Choosing the Best Squirrel Proof Bird Feeders

    Keeping Bird Feeders Safe From Squirrels

    If there is one thing we learned from our research into bird feeders, it is that no one bird feeder can have a perfect defense from squirrels. These little creatures are surprisingly crafty, using their wit and agility to outsmart anti-squirrel technology.

    In addition to purchasing a solid squirrel-proof feeder, utilize other deterring measures to keep feeders safe. It only takes one clever squirrel and his buddy to pass your defense and wipe out weeks’ worth of birdseed.

    Know the Limitations of Squirrels

    Squirrels can perform incredible acrobats to get into feeders. They can leap 5 feet from the ground, 7 feet across from a vantage point, or drop 9 feet down.

    These impressive metrics mean they can access the bird feeder from some compromising positions. But if you know the limitations of what they can physically achieve, you can position your feeder accordingly.

    Baffle Them

    The word baffle is an awesome one. We mostly know it to mean confuse or puzzle. But in this instance, it’s a noun. A baffle is an item that inhibits the movement of energy (force, light, sound) from one area to another.

    In this case, the force is the physicality of a squirrel, and the baffle is a physical barrier.

    Baffles can be placed around poles to prevent climbing or above feeders to prevent overhanging. Top baffles are great in that they also protect the feeder from rain, which washes out seed and clogs up portholes.

    Keep It Clean Under the Feeder

    Squirrels might hang out under your feeder and not on it, cleaning up any dropped seeds and wasted hulls. While this is a bonus for you not having to clean it up, it will also entice more squirrels to the area.

    Once the old food dries up, they will soon look up to see the feeder and be prompted to attempt to get inside.

    Using catchment trays and regular cleaning to keep the area under and around your bird feeder limits available food for passing squirrels, encouraging them to move on from the area.

    garden bird feeder

    Image Credit: PhillipsC, Shutterstock

    Outwit the Squirrels

    No one really wants to engage in a game of wits with squirrels, mostly because they are afraid that they might lose—and often we do! But crafty squirrels can get into even the most thought-out anti-squirrel feeders, so use an array of “booby-traps” to catch them off guard.

    Slinky ropes hanging down from the feeder can spin on contact, sending squirrels flying. This same tactic can be used above by securing the feeder with a spinning hook. Unsuspecting squirrels will get a shock when they try to hop aboard.

    If your feeder is secured with rope or wire between two points, the spinning motion can be achieved by reusing old soda bottles. Line your rope with these plastic bottles so when squirrels confidently try to waltz across, they are quickly spun back down to the ground.

    Related Read: 10 Best Bluebird Feeders: Reviews & Top Picks

    Conclusion

    Our top pick for squirrel-proof bird feeders was Droll Yankees Sunflower Domed Cage. This impenetrable design may not be beautiful, but it works to prevent squirrels from munching on birdseed in the feeder effectively.

    For best value, we really like the PetFusion Tranquility Window Bird Feeder. Not only can correct placement keep pesky squirrels at bay, but it can offer you a unique insight into your bird watching.

    About the Author Sophie Herlihy

    After an early start in the veterinary industry and as a conservation educator at Disney’s Animal Kingdom in Florida, Sophie has since been a successful Zookeeper and Conservationist, specializing in native New Zealand species. When she isn't bird watching in native forests, she can be found with her husband on their sheep and beef station, far from civilization. Sophie enjoys her writing career as it provides opportunities to help and support pet owners of all kinds and getting to research and write about a broad range of topics. The only downside is the long list of strange searches in her internet history!

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