Date: 11/7/18 12:11 pm
From: dianemarie yates <maribird...>
Subject: Re: squirrels
I tried safflower once and had no takers of any kind. As to the capsacian books recommend, I haven't tried it but have heard mixed reviews. I do know that this year the squirrels ate every pepper on the plants I grew until I wrapped the plants in poultry wire. They seem to be acquiring a taste for Mexican food!
The baffle system I use has worked for years. For each feeder pole you will need one standard squirrel baffle--the rounded plastic kind with the collared hole to slip on a pole. I recommend buying a 10-foot length of galvanized steel pipe for your pole rather than the flimsy commercially-made kind, 1-1 1/2" as fits the baffle. Purchase 1--2' or 30" length of 8" width stove pipe from hardware or plumbing store.
Drill 4 holes equidistant in store-bought squirrel baffle, approx. 4" out from center, then 4 matching holes in top edge of stove pipe. Wire baffle atop pipe using rebar tie-wire from hardware store.
Finished product should look like a common toadstool. Mount by snugging 2-2" hose clamps onto the mounted pole after sinking about 18" in ground. Hang clamps at least 5' from ground so that screws oppose each other, forming a stop on which 2-part baffle will rest when slid over pole top. An extra screw through collar & pole reduces sway but is optional.
Shepherd's hooks or hangers from commercial pole setups can be mounted at top and feeders hung from extension hooks so you don't need a ladder. I spray-painted my baffles & poles forest green, then coated with clear lacquer.
Sorry to take up so much space, but this system has stopped squirrels, raccoons and possums for going on 5 years, and even discouraged a yearling bear. My phone is not in use due to dead zone so I can't include photo but will mail diagram to anyone requesting off-list.

Sent from my iPod

> On Nov 7, 2018, at 9:53 AM, Daniel Mason <millipede1977...> wrote:
>
> Sometimes earlier this year, after winter was over, I stopped feeding the birds. Some years I stop in the warmer weather, some years I don't. But raccoons helped me make that decision this year. They managed to get around and eventually break off the squirrel baffle I had that seemed to work well. Squirrels left our feeder alone back then... which is a bit odd considering the ways in which they could have gotten on there that would be easier then than it is now...
>
> So a while ago I finally bought a new feeder. Our old one was cedar, which I loved, and it was in poor shape. We had it for quite a few years. One issue was that eventually it developed moisture problems inside... So it was time for a new one. I bought one that is metal and has a better design to prevent moisture from collecting... but has the overall same design that I liked where birds can feed on opposite sides and then the ends have suet cages. I don't like the way the lid stays on and I might have to address that in the future but for now, I'm happy with it.
>
> When I set it up, I did a few other things. I built a new baffle with a 4 foot long(I think - ish) 8" galvanized pipe and an end cap. It took a little bit of work to cut the hole in the end cap... and I used some brown and green paints to make it kind of camo-ish so it's not just a bright shiny metal thing. It actually looks better than I thought it would and so far, nothing has gotten up it. :)
>
> I needed to clear some brush and small trees from the area as it would be easy to hop on over from some branches. I made it not so easy... but, now that I had it more difficult than last winter... there was a squirrel on there. So I started figuring out different things... cleared a few more branches, etc... seemed good... then, there was that squirrel again. (there's actually at least 2 that hang out)
>
> We discovered they were pretending to be flying squirrels and jumping off the roof. So a little at a time I found which trees they were using to get on the roof to begin with. It was fun watching them "fly" to the feeder though... sometimes missing. Brave little guys, all for a few sunflower seeds. I finally, 2 days ago, got all the trees close to the house(they needed to go anyway) and all was good. Til about half an hour ago when I heard the crash and saw him sitting there again. A branch in our peach tree was swaying.
> Now, I could trim that branch I suppose... but, boy are these things determined. So, I'm looking at other things to do.
>
> I just did a quick search and found a few recommendations but, I'm asking for opinions on these ideas from anyone that's tried them.
>
> 1. Safflower seed. They mentioned squirrels don't really like it. BUT... I have a few questions/concerns with that. Is safflower cheaper or more expensive than sunflower? Would it result in the same birds? Do the red-breasted nuthatches like it? I don't want to stop feeding them what they like as we've never had some stick around this long before. It's been nice. Oh, and do squirrels actually leave it alone?
> Honestly, I go back and forth with seed choices. In the past I've used mostly mixed stuff that was cheaper. Using sunflower has been nice in a way but, it's also what drew in the raccoons and, I'm not getting as many ground feeders as I used to. Thinking about mixing it up a bit or putting another feeder out. We'll see. For now, I'm curious about the safflower vs sunflower.
>
> 2. Pepper. It mentioned adding pepper to the seed, and that would deter the squirrels. We have cayenne pepper I could mix in pretty easily. Does that work on the squirrels? Has anyone tried it? That sounds like an easy solution if it works.
>
> If I can discourage them from being interested in the first place, I don't have to go back and forth trying to "fix" every new thing they figure out.
>
> Daniel Mason
>
>
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