Bafflers & Bird Feeders: How to Keep Squirrels Out

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Bird feeders are often hit by squirrels in the back yard. Your good deed — feeding the birds — might end up being a foolish deed if you don't take care of matters early enough. Seeing a squirrel once in your back garden is something to “ooh” and “ahh” over, probably something that the kids will absolutely love to see. Sadly, that squirrel won't just be in your back yard the one time … It'll be back, and it'll bring a whole army of its kind with it.

Although not quite in the same way that rats, mice and other rodents bring droves of their species to a building once an infestation starts, squirrels do bring other squirrels. Many wild animals divulge news of feeding and nesting spots to others, usually females, and squirrels are no exception. It won't just be the one squirrel that moves in; a female will have give birth to youngsters if she hasn't done so already, and that small family will, in turn, attract other animals, including bigger predators.

What is a Bird Feeder Baffler?
A baffler is very simply a plastic dome that sits under the bird feeder, on a pole, to prevent ground creatures from being able to climb the pole and get to the food. Birds can still fly to the feeder, eating as they wish, but they are free to do so without interruption. Squirrels and other animals can still scare the birds off and attempt to eat their food, but they won't get very far — the baffler will stop them. After a while, even the most resilient squirrel will give up after repeated failed food-reach attempts.

Why Use a Bird Feeder Baffler?
Unlike other methods of keeping squirrels away from bird feeders, a baffler doesn't hurt or hinder any of the animals that may come across it. When you use a greasy or oily substances on the pole, for example, that substance can affect not just the squirrels by keeping them out, but can also stop birds from being able to fly by clogging up their feathers. This leaves them vulnerable — they won't just lose their source of food to the squirrel, they might become prey to the squirrel or other wild animals.

The baffler only really works on bird feeders that are on top of poles. Feeders that are attached to walls, fences, trees, or are hanging from tree branches can still be accessed by the squirrel. If yours are currently hanging or attached to a structure, you should move it to a place on top of a pole, with a baffler attached.

Although there are different designs of baffler you can buy, and also different designs that you can make with certain materials that you may already have at home, they all work in the same way — they provide a physical barrier between the squirrel and the food to ensure they can't get access to it. The squirrel will try again and again and again to get to the food, but it will just keep failing. There is only so much disappointment that any animal is willing to put up with before they give up hope and move along. That's what you want — the squirrel to move along.

When you make life tough for the animal to get to food, there is very little reason for it to stick around. A baffler takes you one step closer to have a wild-animal-free property.

For more information, you may want to click on one of these guides that I wrote:
How much does squirrel removal cost? - get the lowdown on prices.
How to get rid of squirrels - my main squirrel removal info guide.
Example squirrel trapping photographs - get do-it-yourself ideas.
Squirrel job blog - learn from great examples of squirrel jobs I've done.
Squirrels in the attic - what to do to solve the problem.

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