I like to make useful things out of stuff I’ve got around the house.
Let’s make an ugly bird feeder out of a plastic bottle and some sticks. I have five hanging feeders and this is the most popular, by far. I think it’s the sticks. The birds love the sticks.
Start with an empty plastic bottle with a good screw top. This is a squash bottle.
Drill holes on all four ‘sides’ – making the opposing holes level so you can push in sticks for perches. You’ll also need to cut holes for the seed – I made two about a centimetre square and two much larger. The larger ones are too big, but it’s OK – you’ll see later.
I added a short bolt and a small round ex-food storage container lid to the bottom to help hold up my sticks, but it’s probably not necessary. You could add a larger diameter round lid as a perch and seed catcher, if you wish. One good thing about the too-large feed holes meant that I could get a finger inside to help with the bolt. You could probably do this better with a pop-rivet.
Put a couple of rubber bands around the bottle and start adding your sticks all around. Then, take some jute or other tough string and weave through the sticks to lash them into place. If you don’t add the lid thing to the bottom, you can do this at both ends. Not so for me… The sticks also help patch the too-large holes I cut and don’t allow seed to gush out. It’s not perfect, by far, but I would probably stick to centimetre holes next time.
I added a screw hook through the lid and it’s held in place with a cork for stability.
I use my homemade feed scoop to fill the bottle, but not through the back end; the milk jug is flexible enough to make a nice point in the front and it pours in beautifully.
It’s an ugly feeder, no lie, but most importantly, it is also a hit with the birds.