The Traditional Hopper Bird Feeder

Using a hopper bird feeder will attract wild birds that won't visit your tube feeders or suet feeders.

Many larger birds, such as Blue Jays, Grosbeaks, Cardinals and Mourning Doves will be comfortable feeding from a hopper feeder.

Hopper feeders are one of the most common styles of bird feeders. You can find hopper bird feeders shaped like a house or covered bridge others are called gazebo bird feeders. One thing that all hopper feeders have in common is that they hold a large amount of birdseed.

Using a bird feeder that holds a lot of birdseed means that you will spend less time refilling your feeder and more time bird watching. A larger seed capacity is very important during the winter. The cold winter season means that with less food in the wild, the birds will depend on you. Your hopper feeders will provide them with a valuable source of food.

Hopper feeders are usually easy to disassemble for cleaning. The roof is removed to fill the hopper. At that time you can slide out the side panels, usually made from glass or plexiglas, for cleaning. The sides are usually positioned in a V shape which serves to funnel the seed downward and out as it is eaten. The glass or plexiglas sides allow you to see how much seed remains in the hopper.

Since a hopper bird feeder will invite larger birds to feed, you may attract nuisance birds, such as Grackles, Starlings and Sparrows. If nuisance birds or squirrels are a problem for you, there are specialized hopper feeders. One such feeder is called the Double Sided Absolute II Bird Feeder. It features a weight sensitive metal perch that closes access to the seed tray when squirrels or large birds attempt to feed. The attractive spring operated perch is adjustable to allow or exclude large, heavy birds as well as squirrels.

A hopper feeder can be either hung or mounted on a pole. To reduce problems with squirrels, place your hopper feeders at least seven feet from any surface that a squirrel can jump from. You should also use a squirrel baffle on the pole below the feeder.

If you haven't used hopper bird feeders before, you should give them a try. You will be impressed with the amount of seed that they hold and pleased at the number of new birds that come to feed.


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