A Holiday Craft That’s For the Birds


5 Easy Ways to Build a Christmas Bird Feeder

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas. Well, not quite yet, but it’s getting close. And while we’re hanging up our stockings and singing carols around the fire with a cup of eggnog in hand, our little feathered friends outside could use a touch of the Christmas spirit, too. So how about building them a Christmas bird feeder? There are lots of ways to build a variety of unique feeders using materials you have right on hand in the house or yard. Here are a few of our favorites:

Pinecone Bird Feeder

This one’s an eco-friendly variation on the classic ‘pine cone with glue and glitter’ tree ornament. All you’ve got to do is find a pine cone, thread a string through it so it will hang, roll it in peanut butter, sprinkle on bird seed and any other bird treats that will stick and voilà. If you don’t have a pinecone handy, send us a self-addressed, stamped envelope and we’ll…never mind.

Plastic Bottle Bird Feeder

Reduce, reuse, recycle! Got a leftover plastic bottle lying around? All you’ve got to do is cut a hole in both sides of it large enough to fit a perch through. Suitable perches could be a pencil, a twig, a wooden spoon, even chopsticks. Then cut some feeding ports above the perch, fill the bottle will bird seed, and you’re good to go! For more specific directions, check here.

Cheerio Bird Feeder

Even the most diehard cereal fiend can usually be convinced to part with a few dozen Cheerios to make this edible feeder. Bend a pipe cleaner or piece of thick wire into the shape you desire, then thread on the cereal. Once it’s all on, twist the ends together to seal it and you’re done. Hang your feeder with ribbon, yarn, string, whatever you’d like. And no, Cheerios isn’t sponsoring this blog post.

Lego Bird Feeder

Some kids can build just about anything with Legos. So let them build you a bird feeder! Combining kids’ dual passions for engineering and nature, these feeders are fun, sturdy, and colorful—just make sure that you glue the pieces together so that it becomes a permanent structure that does not injure the birds. The possibilities are endless, but this one wins first prize for us.

Cup and Saucer Bird Feeder

Hey, birds should get to party too, right? With the aid of some superglue, stick the cup to the saucer at the angle you’d like, let it dry overnight, and it’s ready to go. For a stand-alone feeder, stick your cup and saucer onto a dowel or post. For best results, make sure to previously sand the areas to be glued.

Christmas bird feeders are a great way both to repurpose household items and to create a happier habitat for local birds. And there are plenty more great ideas for combining crafts with caring for the environment. To learn more, please visit our posts on seed balls, creating butterfly gardens, and turning your backyard into a pollinator’s paradise. Happy holidays!

Student Conservation Association