Long before the tubes came along, the hopper feeder was the standard when it came to bird feeders.
They come in many shapes and sizes.
There are small ones to window mount or hang from an apartment deck.
There are medium and large sized. Then there are monsters that hold up to 25 pounds of seed and decorative gazebo feeders.
They are made of wood, some are steel or aluminum.
They are made of plastics and can come in squirrel resistant designs.
These feeders allow for a greater variety of birds to feed from than tube feeders do.
For this reason, many people still prefer them.
I for one have a couple of these feeders.
There are cheap one and ones that are well built.
As is the case with most feeders, the choice is up to you.
What fits your needs and budgets.
The most popular ones are made of cedar wood with clear plastic sides.
Staples used in construction will work their way lose over time and your feeder falls apart.
A Well built one will have one long hinge on the roof for easy opening and less maintenance.
If your feeder hangs, look for one that has a chain or cable.
Some feeders Come with a rope or nylon cord that will rot within a year or two.
If your feeders have ropes or cords, you can replace them with a chain or cable yourself.
Do you want to pole mount it?
Make sure it is designed to mount on the pole you have in mind.
Just as important as construction is drainage and a seed distributor.
Does it have drainage holes or better yet a screened bottom? If not, wet seed will sit and germinate or rot and that is no good for your birds or you.
Who likes to clean up a smelly mess and no one wants sick birds.
Seed distributors are usually a piece of copper shaped like an inverted V.
This allows for even seed flow no matter how much or little is in your hopper.
My Hopper feeder(s) of choice are "Woodlink's Pro Series". or something along that line of quality and structure.
They fit all the above criteria and then some. Mine are on 10 years and counting.
You wont find the "Pro Series" in box stores. Look at bird stores or garden centers.
Feel free to clean your hopper feeder monthly as you do all of your feeders.
If you want to paint or stain it, be sure to use a neutral color and above all else, make sure you use a water base stain or paint.
For cleaning my feeders, I use oxygen bleach.
It's foaming action softens and removes particles and doesn't harm the wood at all.
Because it is all natural, I don't worry about any chemicals that might harm my birds.
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