It may be a little premature to nominate me for the Order of Canada or a Nobel Prize, but I think I might have found a very inexpensive way to keep the squirrels from jumping onto the suet feeder. Plus, my research indicates that this would also work for hanging bird feeders so I think even higher honours may be warranted.
This ground-breaking scientific study was conducted over a period of six days. It involved 12 voluntary squirrel participants and one generous helping of peanut butter “unsuet suet”.
I bought two glass covers made for ceiling lights ($1.00 each at the thrift store) and hung them above and below the feeder. These covers already have holes in them for mounting so they’re really easy to install.
For the top cover, I simply strung the suspension wire through it, resting the cover over the feeder. I tested this one alone first and not even my smartest, daredevil squirrel wanted to try jumping down from the tree branch onto the cover. Without the cover, this is his normal lunch route.
The trick is to place the light cover upside-down so it’s like an umbrella over (and under) the feeder.
Next, I added a second ceiling light cover below the feeder. I actually held it in place using an old car phone charger which worked perfectly.
I haven’t got footage of the squirrels trying to jump up to it but I did witness one failed attempt. It seems the glass surface is just too slippery for them to get a grip on it, and the curved shape offers no place for them to use their feet for leverage.
Also note that the feeder is hanging far enough from the fence and tree trunk that the squirrels can leap across to it.
The Empress of Dirt has baffled the squirrels. However. This Empress is not a fool. Consider this Round One. Stay tuned. You never know what new counter-innovations those squirrels are cooking up.