Tube Feeders Get Wet Easily
No matter what time of year it is one of the best things you can do for your backyard birds is to keep their food dry. It deters spoilage and helps stretch out the time between feeder cleanings.
Unfortunately, tube feeders seem to find a way to get wet even when you’ve taken precautions. I have upside down finch feeders that have domes and still find a way to get wet. The water pools on the top and then follows the hanging wire into the side of the feeder. As most of you know, thistle seed is especially bad to clump and spoil relatively quickly.
So what can you do?
Bicycle Tire Patches
Bicycle tire patches are one of the easiest and longest lasting ways to keep your tube feeders dry. They will intercept any water running along the hanging wire and allow it to drip harmlessly to the ground.
Here’s you do:
1. Buy a patch kit at your favorite retailer-get the less expensive ones that don’t self-apply. You don’t need the adhesive backed ones because we’re not going to stick the patch to the feeder.
2. Find an old piece of wood-you’ll be using this as a backing to punch a hole in your patch.
3. Get a tool to punch the hole with-you can use the corner of a flat head screwdriver, very small drill or hex bit or an awl if you have one.
4. Punch a hole big enough for the hanging wire-it can be a little small but try not to make it too big or it won’t work as well.
5. Pull both wires out of the holes in your feeder-these should be near the top of your feeder.
6. Fit one patch over the ends of the wires you just removed-try to leave the colored end facing out if they’re different because that doesn’t seem to spook birds as much as black. Blue, green, brown are best.
7. Re-insert the wires into the sides of your feeder-is the black side facing out? If not, flip it over and re-attach.
8. That’s it, you’re done!
You’ll notice after the very first hard rain that your tube feeders are much dryer when you eliminate the dripping from the hanging wire. Thistle feeders will see the most dramatic improvement because they don’t also have water getting in the seed holes that other tube feeders can have.
The best part is that it costs next to nothing, takes very little time and lasts for years.
If your birds are hesitant at first just be patient. All birds are naturally suspicious of changes. They’ll come around soon enough. Plus, it’s fun watching them test out the feeder upgrades.
I hope you’ll leave me a comment and tell me how this has helped you.