Food for the flock: Build an attractive bird feeder

Birds, and humans, will be attracted to this seedy restaurant

By Dave Boulton

Photo by Roger Yip

Flying feathered guests are not picky; you can feed them from almost anything that holds seed. However, the human eye often looks for something pleasing, and this copper-roofed feeder looks equally good in a Victorian garden or a suburban backyard. The fresh copper colour of the roof 
panels disappears over time, replaced by a soft green patina as the metal oxidizes in the elements. 
The feeder’s central seed silo is filled through the opening covered by the finial on top of the roof, and 
the structure can be dismantled from below for seasonal cleaning or repair.

Most of the assembly was done with a 23-gauge pin nailer. This small, quiet, air-powered tool allows you to hold pieces together with one hand, and fasten them with one shot from the other. Fastener holes are so small, they’re almost invisible, and the nailer causes less installation strain on small structural pieces than multiple hammer blows. A hammer and finishing nails work; however, they do require more time, care and predrilling.


Part Material Size (T x W x L*) Qty.

Base cedar 3/4" x 10" octagon 1
Pyramid cedar 1" x 2" x 2" 1
Outer posts cedar 3/4" x 3/4" x 6" 8
Silo posts cedar 3/4" x 3/4" x 9" 4
Silo top rails cedar 1/4" x 3/4" x 3 1/2"** 4
Silo sides acrylic 0.050" x 2 3/16" x 9" 4
Outer rails cedar 1/4" x 3/4" x 4 1/2"** 8
Outer post plates cedar 3/8" x 3/4" x 4"** 8
Rafters cedar 3/4" x 3/4" x 9" 8
Finial Lee Valley #41K27.60 1
Finial disc cedar 1/2" x 3"-diameter 1
Octagonal top disc cedar 3/4" x 2" octagon 1
Finial dowel wood 1"-diameter x 1 1/2" 1
Roof panels copper 0.021" x 4 3/8" x 9" 8
Battens cedar 1/8" x 3/4" x 9" 8

* Length indicates grain direction

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