Homestead Hack: Keep Wild Birds Away From Chicken Feed

by Texas Homesteader ~

Y’all already know we split the garden area this year. About 40% of that area became the chicken ranging area and the other 60% remained my veggie garden, but more efficiently arranged. I love the symbiotic relationship of chickens/garden. I’m hoping the chickens will keep grass scratched away from the adjoining garden area to help me win the fight against Bermuda grass. And I know they will also eat all the bugs & grasshoppers coming toward my garden from their area. I can toss over grubs or produce that didn’t make it, and the hens provide me with fresh eggs. Win/Win!

I recently shared with you a low-waste chicken feeder RancherMan whipped up for me. While I love how much it reduces the chicken’s slinging it to the ground and wasting it, the wild birds were also loving the free open buffet. We’re feeding organic laying pellets, I certainly didn’t want to be feeding that to the birds! But oh we’ve discovered a secret – check out today’s Homestead Hack.

Check out this Homestead Hack - Sometimes it's true you can use low-tech methods to successfully address a problem. Love it! #TexasHomesteader

I’ve heard for years that you can scare away certain critters by placing a moving shiny object around the area. But it wasn’t until I saw this piece by the Prairie Homestead that the light switch clicked on. Maybe there was something I could do to keep the birds from eating us out of house & home. Hummmm…

You know by now my battle cry: “Use Whatcha Got!”  I remembered that the string that’s used on our cattle feed bags does not deteriorate very quickly. So I figured that would be the perfect thing to use here.

I took a spare step-in electric fence post and angled it so it was tilted toward the chicken feeder. Then  I folded a long feedbag string until it was in a thickness of four strings and looped it through the hole in this old CD I found in our office. I tied a loop on the opposite end of the string & slipped it over the end of my post. The angle of the post and the length of the string causes the shiny cd to move even with a gentle breeze.

Check out this Homestead Hack - Sometimes it's true you can use low-tech methods to successfully address a problem. Love it! #TexasHomesteader

Then I stepped back to see how well it worked. BOOM! Wild birds gone! I wondered if the moving disk would also make the chickens apprehensive. But they didn’t seem to be affected by it at all and happily bellied up to the feeder when they got hungry.

Check out this Homestead Hack - Sometimes it's true you can use low-tech methods to successfully address a problem. Love it! #TexasHomesteaderSuccess!  Sometimes it’s true you can use low-tech methods to successfully address a problem.  And I’ve used items I already had around the ranch so there was nothing to buy.  Love it!


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9 thoughts on “Homestead Hack: Keep Wild Birds Away From Chicken Feed

  1. Melissa @ My Darla Clementine

    This is awesome! I love that you solved the problem with a cd. Way to be creative and resourceful. Super cool hack! Thanks for sharing with us on Simply Natural Saturdays!

  2. Joyce @ It's Your Life

    What an awesome idea!! What do you do to keep raccoons away?

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      We have lots of raccoons around here Joyce, but haven’t had much trouble with them in the chicken coop. Maybe it’s the close proximity to the house? Maybe it’s the 6-ft welded-wire fence we used for the coop, maybe just dumb luck… LOL Birds were the main culprit in sneaking massive amounts of our chicken feed. It’s lasting so much longer now, we only have to fill the feeder about once every week or two. ~TxH~

  3. Ellen C.

    My husband put together a similar chicken feed tube for our girls. We had it mounted to the chain link fence surrounding their yard but when it rained moisture got in and that was with the end caps on! Mold grew inside the tube. Since then, after cleaning out the mold, the feeder was mounted to the chicken house and is under the protection of the extended eave. It really does save on food and cuts down on waste. I will be trying the CD trick to see if that will cut down on the free loading crows, squirrels & cotton tail rabbits.

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      I noticed a small amount of moisture in the feed after a rain as well Ellen, I figured I didn’t have the cap on tight enough. Thankfully it was not much moisture and by then the feeder was almost empty and needing to be refilled anyway. I’ll be looking at other moisture control steps I can take to assure dry feed. Thanks for the tip. Good luck with those free-loading crows! LOL ~TxH~

  4. tonia conner

    For some reason the wild birds don’t bother our chicken feeder which is kept under our hen house. Ours is elevated and we also keep the stray there. I really like your feeder though and going to try and get Santaman to make me one for when this one finally kicks the bucket.
    I posted a recipe of yours yesterday and linked back to you. I did not know if google notified you are not. But wanted to let you know I will be doing this time to time if it is alright with you.
    Are those your white face? We use to have Black Angus years ago. Santaman wants to get one now, but I get too up and personal with them and can’t eat them. We won’t even eat our chickens. But them we only have a few right now and wouldn’t eat them anyway if we wanted the eggs.

  5. ColleenB.~Texas

    Wonderful idea and great use of using them so-called ‘junk’ CD’s.
    The CD’s are also good to hang by your fruit trees as well, along with them disposable aluminum pie pans of which I save when using them mini Keebler pie crusts, hung with fishing line

    1. Texas Homesteader Post author

      Yes, I’ve heard of hanging various shiny things around for various reasons, I guess I always just assumed because they were so low-tech that they wouldn’t work. Not sure of the other applications but this hack worked like GOLD for keeping the birds out of my chicken feed. I’ve not seen one at the feeder since I installed this setup! ~TxH~


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