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How to Make a Pine Cone Bird Feeder? (With & Without Peanut Butter)

how to make a pine cone bird feeder

Many young birders and bird watchers are finding ways to add a feeding station to their garden without spending more. This is where DIY projects come into the picture. You will have the freedom to choose the type of feeder you want and customize it to your liking. But first, you need to learn how to make a pine cone bird feeder, one of the most accessible feeders.

It does not require much, and it can be a good bonding activity with the kids. You can consider several variations, like a pine cone bird feeder with lard. Take a look at this tutorial.

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Ways to Make a Pine Cone Bird Feeder

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Peanut Butter Pine Cone Bird Feeder

What You’ll Need

  • Pinecones
  • Eight to ten inches long string or twine
  • Any brand of peanut butter
  • Mixed birdseed
  • Butter knife or spreader
  • Shallow dish or plate

1. Find a good pinecone

Making a pine cone bird feeder is a popular classroom craft activity. It works as an enjoyable pastime for kids and can attract birds in your area. The first step to making a quality pine cone bird feeder with honey is finding a good pinecone.

You can easily turn any pinecone into a feeder, no matter its shape or size. But if you want it to hold more bird food, opt for larger and broader cones that are pretty open.

Closed pine cones can open fully if you let them sit in the oven at 150℉ to 200℉ for several minutes. Avoid using scented and decorative pine cones, and pick the ones that had fallen naturally.

Now that we got that covered, let’s proceed to the step-by-step guide.

2. Clean the pine cones

For foraged pinecones, shake or tap gently to remove any debris and dirt. Trim any loose scales if they’re tightly packed. For store-bought pinecones, wash with warm running water and let them dry.

3. Tie the string around the pine cones

Tie the string around the cone, preferably three rows below the wide end. Secure it by overlapping the cone with the scale. You can loop the other end or leave it open.

4. Coat the cones with peanut butter

With the knife or spreader, coat the cone with peanut butter. Press it between the scales and fill large gaps. Apply it thinly or thickly, depending on your preference.

5. Add the mixed bird seeds

Roll the coated pine cone on a dish of birdseed. Press the sides to ensure that the seeds are stuck. Fill the gaps and repeat the process until the cone is fully covered.

6. Hang the pine cone bird feeder

Once done, you can hang the pine cone bird feeder with peanut butter to your desired location. Choose shaded areas with a cool temperature to keep the peanut butter in good condition.

Pine Cone Bird Feeder Without Peanut Butter

What You’ll Need

  • Pinecones
  • Eight to ten inches long string or twine
  • Glue gun
  • Piece of cardboard
  • Silicone cooking brush
  • Straight stick or dowel
  • Coconut oil
  • Mixed birdseed

1. Clean pine cones

Remove any dirt and debris from your pine cones by lightly shaking them. This process also removes loose scales that can break the feeder.

2. Glue the dowel and tie the twine

Attach the stick or dowel at the top of the cone using the glue gun. Then, tie the twine securely around the cone at the other end. Loop the string to hang later.

3. Apply coconut oil

Apply the slightly-melted coconut oil all over the cone using the silicone brush. Make sure you reach between the gaps.

4. Coat with bird seeds

Fill the bowl with bird seeds, then dip the oil-drenched pine cone. Roll it around until all sides are completely covered. Shake off any excess seeds.

5. Let dry in a cool place

Rest the pine cone feeder on cardboard and place it in a cool place or inside the fridge. Let the coconut oil harden.

6. Hang the pine cone feeder

Once you are sure that the oil has hardened the seeds in place, you can hang the pine cone bird feeder with coconut oil outside. Find a cool and shaded area like a high tree branch where birds often like to go.

Helpful DIY Pine Cone Feeder Tips

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Whether you plan to make a pine cone feeder with/without peanut butter, these tips and tricks can assist you further.

  • Substitute peanut butter with vegetable shortening.
  • Soften peanut butter by placing it in the microwave for a few seconds. This will make it easier to apply and spread.
  • For flower seeds, shred them into smaller pieces. They can sometimes be too large to stick to the pine cone. Grinding them in the processor will do the trick.
  • It can get really messy, especially if kids are involved. Use paper towels to catch seeds and peanut butter or oil. Cleaning up after the project is effortless this way.
  • There is no set limit to how much peanut butter you slather, but if you want to make your pine cone visible, adjust the amount just to the scales.
  • Hang your feeder close to natural shades like shrubs and trees. Keep it in a location safe from predators and where you have a clear view.
  • If you want to store your pine cone feeder, place it in an air-tight container to prevent mold. Find a dry and cool location, so the peanut butter doesn’t melt.
  • With proper storage, it can last for a month. You can also freeze the pine cone feeder for up to three months. Simply hang them outside to thaw.

If you don’t have the leisure to make your own DIY bird feeder, you can always browse the Internet or your local bird store. Take your time picking a high-quality bird feeder that suits your home.

Conclusion

Now that you how to make a pine cone bird feeder, you can make this a fun activity with your children. It will also help you cut back on bird feeder costs while attracting more bird species.

We hope that this tutorial helped you easily learn how to make good pine cone feeders. There are more DIY projects like pine cone birdhouse that you can consider if you have some free time to spare. Let us know what you think in the comments below! We always love hearing from our readers.

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