6 Simple Tricks to Stop Squirrels from Climbing Bird Feeder Poles

Try the following tricks to keep squirrels out of bird feeders. Stop those agile squirrels from climbing the pole and stealing the invaluable bird seeds.

1. Mount a Squirrel Baffle

A baffle, such as the PREDATORGUARD, is a simple device mounted to bird feeder poles to prevent squirrels from reaching the bird seeds. The cone-shaped device will cause squirrels to slide off if they attempt to jump towards the bird feeder. Smearing the baffle with Vaseline may provide added protection.

2. Attach a Slinky

For a more entertaining solution, you could try attaching a slinky to the upper section of the bird feeder pole. The squirrels will have little luck because the slinky will drop them down as soon as they hang on to it.

3. Get a Squirrel Spinner

Another solution that’s harmless to squirrels is to get a bird feeder that will spin as soon as the squirrel lands on the bird feeder perch.

Other Squirrel Prevention Tips

4. Follow the 5-7-9 Rule

Adjust the location and height of the bird feeder based on the 5-7-9 rule. Each number represents a specific length that a typical squirrel is able to jump.

A typical squirrel cannot jump more than 5 feet from the ground, jump more than 7 feet from a tree or building to the side of the feeder, and cannot drop more than 9 feet below an overhang.

5. Mix Seeds with Cayenne Pepper

Deter squirrels by mixing the bird seeds with cayenne pepper. The birds are unaffected because they lack the taste receptors for capsaicin. Squirrels, on the other hand, will stay away.

6. Provide Birds with Safflower Seeds

If you aren’t picky about the types of seeds you want to provide to the birds then consider getting safflower seeds. Most squirrels won’t touch these types of seeds.

Warning: Use of Vaseline & Oil

Some people will suggest greasing up the pole with a slippery substance like vaseline or oil. We wouldn’t recommend this as some of these substances could be potentially toxic to the squirrels and other neighboring wildlife.

This method would also require more maintenance because you would have to re-apply the substance to the pole after every rainfall.


  • Louise:

    How about the use of nylons as a deterrent to squirrels climbing up poles?

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