Make a Bird Feeder

How to make a Bird Feeder Café

At some times of the year Birds like Tui, Bellbird and Waxeye love to feed on sweet nectar.
When they are short of food (winter) or busy raising chicks in Spring & Summer it’s easy to attract these Birds to your Garden by offering a Café of sugar water .
If hungry, they will appear in your Garden on a regular basis.
Here are some ideas that you can use to build a feed station Café for them.Initailly I look for a suitable dish that holds around 1 liter of sugar water.
I usually start at local the re-cycle center and try to find a solid plastic dish of a bright color. Once I have a suitable dish, I build my Café around it.
Here are some ideas for a Café to fit a 200mm dish. This one also has a 1.5 liter reservoir that stands up in the center of the dish to top it up. Because it’s open on all sides, Birds can confidentially see around them while feeding.
See the photo gallery to help you get it built.

You will need:

* 15mm marine plywood.
* 30mm x 2.5mm Galvanized nails
* Strong water proof glue ( such as no more nails )
* Jig saw
* Hand or skill saw
* Hammer
* ½ meter of 24mm x 40mm timber

To Build:

1. From the ply cut a panel 200mm x 250mm for the base.
2. Cut end panels 270mm x 400mm. Nail both panels together
3. Cut a 45 degree angle at the top to form a gable roof shape.
4. Cut 170mm x 200 squares out of both panels with the jigsaw.
5. You may want to drill some smaller holes in the gable end as decoration before you separate the panels again.
6. Nail the panels one on either end of the base.
7. Cut a panel 200mm x 250mm to use as ceiling & cut a 90mm hole in the middle. (The feeder bottle sits up inside this hole.)
8. Nail the ceiling between the end panels and just below the angle you cut for the roof.
9. Cut two pieces of the 25 x 40 timber 200mm long.
10. Nail these onto the long edge of the base panel between the end panels.
11. Cut a roof 370mm x 250mm and cut the top edges at 45 degrees.
12. Nail and glue every thing together. (Consider pre-drilling the nail holes. )
13. Mount on a pole and secure with galvanized roof screws.

To create a tiled roof effect and help keep out rain, I glued slats 5mm thick and 280mm x 50mm.
You can then paint or stain everything to the desired color.
Mount your Café on a pole or a tree but ensure it’s above “Cat jumping” height – so at least 2 meters above ground.
If you mount your Café on a wire on a branch it will blow in the wind and spill all the sweet water. Better to have less movement.
Dissolve 1 cup of white sugar per liter of warm water and fill the dish and the reservoir.
Drill an 8mm hole in the cap of the bottle to let the sugar water run into the feeder bowl as birds drink it.

Sparrows will also feed in your Café and being dirty birds , every time you fill up you will need to wash out their excrement to prevent their diseases transferring to Native Birds.
Enjoy the action.