How to Make Coconut Shell Bird Feeders

October 11, 2011

Coconut Shell Bird FeedersFeeding birds in the wintertime not only helps them find food when it’s scarce, but has other benefits too, and what better way to do it than to get down & squelchy making your own bird feeders.

According to *research undertaken by the University of Exeter and Queen’s University Belfast, birds that are provided with extra food during the winter helps to ensure a more successful breeding season the following spring.
It’s also much more economical making your own fat feeders than buying them, and great fun if you don’t mind getting your hands dirty (just wear rubber gloves if you do).
So with that in mind this morning a group of twenty of us made enough feeders to keep our local bird population full for months!
So what do you need?
Coconut Shell Bird FeedersLard (at room temperature)
Bird seed
Grated cheese
Coconut shells, yogurt pots or small disposable cups
Mixing bowl
I deliberately haven’t added quantities here as we made lots (the picture shows a 2kg bag of peanuts).  However, I would estimate that one pack of lard would be enough to fill four half shells, with the other ingredients added until the mixture ‘just looks right’.
What’s next?
A friend donated some empty coconut shells, pre-cut & holes drilled (thanks Pat!) to tie the string to.  We left the coconut inside, just scoring it with a blade to give the mixture something to stick to although I’m not sure that was necessary. Then we added all the ingredients to a bowl and squished and squelched it between our fingers until everything was combined (which caused great amusement & delight!)
Coconut Shell Bird FeedersThe mixture was then packed into the shells. Once we ran out of shells we made holes in the bottom of yogurt pots, poked & tied string through them and filled those. When they were filled we used plastic drink cups! NOTE: We have since learnt how harmful single use plastic is to the environment and are now using biodegradable bun cases.
Once the containers were full they were placed in the fridge for an hour or more which allowed the lard to set. Once set they’re ready to hang outdoors as they are.
Have you ever made your own bird feeders and do you use any other ingredients/method?
* Source: Science Daily


  • Reply Colette October 11, 2011 at 2:39 pm

    This is great, as I never know what to put out for the birds, other than peanuts, and breadcrumbs. We will definitely do these. So much better to make your own too.

  • Reply Foxglove Lane October 11, 2011 at 4:44 pm

    Great ideas there, never done it, when I've finished drinking all the sloe gin I will turn to the birds needs:~)

  • Reply Margaret October 11, 2011 at 7:48 pm

    I've done that with yoghurt pots and other containers. Sometimes just make a slab of it and put it on the bird table. Also used pine cones, press the mixture into the pine cone and spread peanut butter over it.

  • Reply Greenside Up October 11, 2011 at 8:03 pm

    I've tended to do the same @Colette but not this year & love the idea of using pine cones @Margaret as we have trees here that drop them! @Foxglove …. if you need some help finishing it off ???

  • Reply hotmail January 28, 2021 at 5:58 pm

    Do NOT use whole peanuts in the coconut feeder! They should be ground up and squidged into the lard. Birds choke on whole peanuts which should be dispensed in a wire peanut feeder.

    • Reply Dee Sewell February 3, 2021 at 1:13 pm

      A good reminder, thanks Anniee


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