We Tried Amazon's Highest-Rated Squirrel-Proof Bird Feeder For Under $50 & Got Outsmarted

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We have mixed feelings about squirrels. We enjoy watching their silly hijinks and are pretty jealous of their exceptional problem-solving skills, except when it comes to our birdfeeders. Those little rascals have destroyed several of our plastic feeders over the years and they love to steal our suet cakes. We managed to solve that problem using a squirrel baffle (spoiler alert: they were indeed baffled!), but they have continued to create havoc while stealing birdseed. It was time to take action, so we bought this "squirrel-proof" birdfeeder on Amazon. With a 4.3 star average out of over 170 ratings, it seems people agree with the claims made on the product page.

There were several styles of squirrel-proof birdfeeders from which to choose. Since squirrels weigh more than birds, most squirrel-proof feeders have a mechanism that restricts access to the enclosed birdseed when a squirrel crawls on it. The birdfeeder we selected doesn't have that feature. In fact, we were not sure how it could be squirrel-proof, but that's exactly why we wanted to try it.

Installing the birdfeeder

We really liked the design and finish of this birdfeeder, and for less than $25, it makes an attractive addition to our bird feeding station. To test whether squirrels would go for the seed in this feeder, we hung it next to our old plastic feeder from which those thieving culprits love to steal sunflower seeds. We encountered an issue while filling our new feeder — it only holds larger seeds. This information is on the product page, but we didn't notice it. This birdfeeder can only be used with corn, sunflower seeds, red beans, and wheat. So, when we added a scoop of feed that included millet ...well ... we got a shoe full of seeds. That one is on us. 

Aside from using the wrong seeds in our feeder, the installation process was a breeze. It came out of the box in excellent condition. We quickly folded out the perches on the bottom, filled it with seed, and secured the top with the included clip to keep critters out.


Overall, we like this feeder but are a little disappointed that it works with so few types of bird seed, which will limit the kinds of birds it will attract. We were pleasantly surprised with the number of drainage holes in the bottom to keep seeds from sprouting and clogging up the whole feeder like many other styles. The birds seem to really like the perch and being able to eat seeds from the sides or the platform base.

Of course, the real question we came here to answer is, "Is it squirrel-proof?" The short answer is ... not really. After getting it installed, we suspect the feature that makes it "squirrel-proof" is the latch on top of the lid. You can pull up a decorative tab, fill the feeder, and secure it closed by putting that latch back in place. Squirrels cannot open the top to get to the seed inside, but they can easily access bird seeds on the platform. While this feature might keep larger pests, like raccoons, from popping the top off and having a feast, it won't keep squirrels out of your feeder. At best, this bird feeder slightly deters squirrels.