- 1. Squirrel Buster Woodpecker Feeder
- 2. Birds Choice 2-Cake Hanging Suet Feeder
- 3. Gray Bunny GB-6857 Premium Steel Sunflower Seed Feeder
- 4. Nature’s Way Bird Products CWF2 Cedar Suet Upside-Down Bird Feeder
- 5. Rubicon Hunter Green Suet Feeder With Tail Prop
- 6. Birds Choice 2-Cake Pileated Suet Feeder
- 7. Stokes Select 38069, X Feeder Brown
- 8. Stovall Products 13F Cedar Suet Post Log Feeder
- 9. Kettle Moraine Cedar Single-cake Tail Prop Suet Bird Feeder
- 10. Stokes Select 38070 Capacity Double Bird Feeder
- Woodpecker Feeder Selection Tips
- Types of Woodpecker Feeders
- Top Woodpecker Feeder Brands
- How to Make your Own Woodpecker Feeder DIY
- Woodpecker at Your Backyard: Questions and Answers (Q&A)
Roughly twenty species of woodpeckers can be found in North America. For the most part, woodpeckers do not migrate and live in the same area throughout the year. They are tremendously beneficial to the environment and they consume thousands of garden pests like wood-boring insects. Enticing woodpeckers to gather in your backyard is extremely enjoyable as they are fascinating to watch. These cheerful birds will reward you by consuming insect pests like ants, crickets, flies, grasshoppers, spiders, beetles, wasps and grubs. Below are ten top woodpecker feeders you can consider for your yard:
1. Squirrel Buster Woodpecker Feeder
As suggested by the name, this wild bird feeder is truly chew proof and squirrel proof. It is designed to hold nuggets and shelled peanuts. It ideal for decks and condos as all the food is consumed. The weight of the feeder can also be adjusted to be a deterrent to larger nuisance birds. In addition, the design makes provision for a big tail prop area, which makes it woodpecker friendly. This is so because it enables woodpeckers to comfortably feed by using their tails for balance and support, similar to how they feed on trees.
• Seed ventilation system to keep the seeds fresher for longer
• The shroud automatically closes and denies access to the seeds at the weight of an adult squirrel.
• There is a patented adjustable spring mechanism that gives you the option of controlling the size birds you want to feed
Pros & Cons
• Chew proof parts to prevent squirrel invasion
• 4 feed ports with detachable perches to convert it into a clinging feeder
• Lifetime care guarantee; you can call anytime with a question or to address a problem
• Designed to be dismantled by hand without using tools
• Excellent customer service
• The screw on the bottom can get loose and send parts flying; however, customer service is fast, friendly and will help you with this if a part goes missing
• It is a bit small and narrow, which sometimes fuel bird fights as they jostle for space.
2. Birds Choice 2-Cake Hanging Suet Feeder
This suet feeder is made out of high-quality cedar and is designed to accommodate two suet cakes. It is also equipped with a tail prop that is meant to help woodpeckers in feeding more comfortably. The wood is quite attractive and provides a solid base for the metal cages. It provides the birds with many reasons to come for sustenance and deliver glorious stress relieve to the nature lover, over and over again.
• It is made out of high grade cedar
• The dimensions of the feeder are 6 x 5 x 8 inches
• It weighs 1 pound
• It has 2 front-loading suet baskets
• High-quality and well-constructed
Pros & Cons
• Designed to make feeding easy
• It is reasonable priced
• Heavy-duty suet cake holder is design to stand up against the elements and the exuberance of the various birds
• Suet becomes hard for the birds to reach when it starts shrinking in size
• Doors open way too easily
3. Gray Bunny GB-6857 Premium Steel Sunflower Seed Feeder
This high-quality wild bird feeder is great for watching beautiful birds in your yard. It is remarkable for attracting an assortment of bird species like nuthatches, chickadees, titmice, jays and woodpeckers. It has the capacity to accommodate 4 cups of feed.
• It has galvanized steel mesh with accurately-sized openings to keep contents secure but accessible
• Remarkable for shelled peanuts, black oil sunflower seeds and dried fruit mixes
• Fully-exposed seeds enable several birds to simultaneously feed
• Lid slides opens easily for refills
• Its contoured base facilitates the distribution of seeds towards the external walls
Pros & Cons
• High-quality construction
• Comes fully assembled
• Chew-proof and durable iron tops and bottoms are constructed to last a lifetime
• Easy to fill
• Maintenance and cleaning are easy
• Not very easy to clean
• Perches are a bit unsteady
4. Nature’s Way Bird Products CWF2 Cedar Suet Upside-Down Bird Feeder
This bird feeder is perfect for woodpeckers and clinging birds. It is designed to naturally eliminate nuisance birds like grackles and blackbirds as they do not hang upside down when eating. The superior quality is combined with innovative design technology for long-lasting durability and ease-of-use.
• Crafted from premium insect-resistant and rot-resistant cedar
• Holds 2 suet cakes
• Design features a stainless steel wire mesh basket and water-based protective stain
• Backed by a select 5-year warranty
• Includes rust-free hardware and a vinyl-coated steel hanging cable
Pros & Cons
• Easy-to-fill design
• Naturally insect-resistant and rot-resistant
• Time reveals defects in function and design
5. Rubicon Hunter Green Suet Feeder With Tail Prop
The design of this feeder is environmentally friendly and it is built to last a lifetime. It will not peel, fade, crack, rot, warp or chip. The feeder attracts birds like woodpeckers, chickadees, goldfinches, finches, grosbeaks, kinglets, sparrows and nuthatches.
• Made out of durable recycled milk jugs
• Dimensions are 11 x 6 x 2 inches
• Provides support for bird tails while they feed
• It comes with steel cable for hanging
• Birds grip onto the black wire cage to feast on any standard-sized suet cake
Pros & Cons
• It is highly durable
• It is environmentally friendly
• The top lid easily lifts up for expedient refilling
• 100 year guarantee
• Needs a few minor modifications with items like long twist ties to function optimally
• The modifications lengthens the re-filling time
6. Birds Choice 2-Cake Pileated Suet Feeder
This bird-friendly feeder is made out of recycled plastic and will accommodate 2 suet cakes. Additionally, its extended tail prop is designed to assist woodpeckers in feeding more comfortably. There are suet grids on the 2 sides, designed to provide ample feeding area. Since it is made out of recycled material, this Birds Choice feeder is environmentally friendly and it can be used by all woodpeckers and a variety of other birds. In addition, the green roof color and taupe body of this bird feeder also allow it to blend seamlessly into the natural surroundings.
• 5/8-inch poly-lumber made out of recycled milk and plastic jugs
• Vinyl-coated grid
• Fully routed edges
Pros and Cons
• Highly durable
• Lifetime guarantee to never split, crack or fade
• Easy to fill
• Extra-long tail prop
• Users have experienced squirrels stealing the bird feed
7. Stokes Select 38069, X Feeder Brown
This caged bird feeder has a specifically-designed opening mechanism to prevent squirrel invasion. Smaller birds can slip inside this cage easily and stay there to eat. The two-cake capacity and four-port design enables several birds to simultaneously feed. Its natural brown color draws a wide variety of birds and the ports provide ample feasting places for the birds. It is also easy to open, clean and fill. This feeder makes the birds feel safe from bothersome predators as they feast.
• It has a durable, weather-proof, powder-coated roof that is tight fitting
• The design of the metal cage keeps out squirrels; however, small and some medium-sized birds can to enter to feed inside
Pros & Cons
• The metal construction is highly durable
• You can always see the level of the bird seed at all times through the clear feeder
• The open case enables even air filtration to keep the feed fresh
• Some small birds have difficulty reaching the suet
• Cannot be pole mounted
8. Stovall Products 13F Cedar Suet Post Log Feeder
This medium-sized feeder is made from white cedar fence posts. To hang the feeder, an eye hook is bolted into the top of it. For the best fit, pine tree log jammer suet plugs are recommended for the feeder. It is made wholly of Western red cedar and its assembly involves the use of dichromate plated and stainless steel washers, screws, chains and hooks. This product is hand sanded and a number of Stovall products have layers of wood protector. In addition to coating the wood, the wood protector accentuates the natural warmth and the wood grain of the cedar.
This wood is very lightweight and the feeder works remarkably well. Tons of beautiful birds flock to this feeder and create a stunning spectacle for both the avid and casual nature lovers. Even household pets seem to enjoy the flurry of activities inspired by this cedar log feeder.
• It measures 16-inches in height by 3½-inches in diameter
• Eye hook for hanging is bolted into the feeder top
• Available in white color
• Made out of cedar fence posts
Pros & Cons
• Accommodates multiple birds all at once
• Clean up is simple
• Attracts birds quickly easily
• Stands up great against the elements
• Eyelet at the top is a bit small
• It didn't come with a hanger
• Getting the suet balls can be a bit messy
9. Kettle Moraine Cedar Single-cake Tail Prop Suet Bird Feeder
This suet feeder is made out of solid cedar and fortified with stainless steel screws. The wood has a slight roughness in addition to texture and grain, which combine to allow the birds' claws to grab hold and have better access in comparison to a plastic feeder. The suet cage is made out of heavy gauge vinyl-coated wire mesh that is designed to keep those pesky squirrels and nuisance birds away. The hanging chain is also very study so the feeder is not easily detached by the exuberance of the birds or squirrels. In addition, his product provides ample room inside for a regular sized suet block, which can supply a number of birds with sustenance.
• It has a slide up roof that lifts up easily for filling and cleaning
• Its tail prop area is enjoyed by the woodpeckers since it allows them to feed more comfortably
• It is made out solid cedar and held together by stainless steel screws
• The overall dimensions of the product are 7 inches in width by x 3.5 inches in depth by 13 inches in height
Pros & Cons
• Sturdy construction
• Craftily designed
• Easy to hang up and take down
• The hanging cable could be longer
• Its light weight causes it to swing a bit much in the wind
10. Stokes Select 38070 Capacity Double Bird Feeder
This buffet feeder is designed to hold two seed cakes or suet. The advanced grid design enables birds like woodpeckers, chickadees and nuthatches to take advantage of the feed. Its double-locking closure system ensures the suet is secured in the feeder. It is all metal, which thwarts the efforts of even the most ardent squirrels.
• Made of powder-coated metal
• It has a double-locking feature
• It weighs 1.2 pounds
• The dimensions are 8.3 x 6.75 x 5
Pros & Cons
• Simple yet attractive design
• It is versatile
• Rain protectant roof
• Some find the door does not stay closed but a twist tie can remedy this
Woodpecker Feeder Selection Tips
In nature, woodpeckers live off a variety of different foods including grubs and insects, fruits, oily nuts, acorn and sap. Also, different species of woodpeckers have slightly different eating habits and prefer some foods more than the other.
For backyard birders, however, it is somewhat difficult (though not impossible) to incorporate all of these different food groups on to their feeding station. As such, most rely on the most popular and proven method to attract and feed woodpeckers, and this is the suet cake.
Yes, woodpeckers love suet and they aren’t too picky about it either. If using commercial suet cakes, you can use them right out of the box (no need to render, etc.) and you’ll find one or more woodpeckers happily gorging away on it.
For this reason, suet feeders happen to be a natural choice as a woodpecker feeder. However, as you’ll notice from our list, there are some woodpecker feeders that allow you to offer other foods such as peanuts, sunflower seeds, etc. This may make it a bit confusing as to when it comes to selecting a woodpecker feeder. So, here’s our comprehensive buying guide plus a checklist that we hope will help.
1. Suet Feeders
Since woodpeckers are clinging birds, any simple metal basket or cage suet feeder should be good enough to go as long as the product is sturdy and well-built.
However, the birds will feel more comfortable with a suet feeder that comes with a tail prop. And we would strongly encourage you to get one of these models.
Another good choice is a suet feeder (with/without tail prop) that supports two suet cakes. This has TWO advantages: one, you won’t need to refill too often and secondly, you can put two different suet cake products side by side and can find out firsthand what product is favored more by the birds.
Suet log feeders are another good option as these vertically hanging log-like feeders with drilled holes across their length look more natural in your yard. You can use commercial suet plugs to fill up the holes. Or, if you are a bit more industrious, you can jam the holes with some homemade suet dough, or even with peanut butter.
[Additional note: If you’ve larger woodpeckers visiting your yard, go for a larger suet cage.]
2. Other Feeders
Woodpeckers also like fruits, black oil sunflower seeds, shelled or unshelled peanuts. If you’ve already have some vertical sunflower seeds mesh feeder in your feeders collection, you may use that to feed the woodpeckers the sunflower seeds. Vertical feeders since woodpeckers are clinging birds and would be more comfortably off with this type of feeders.
Or, you may invest in feeders specifically designed for woodpeckers such as the Brome Woodpecker-Friendly Tail Prop Peanut Feeder or the Gray Bunny Peanut and Sunflower Seed Feeder (refer to our list).
3. The Checklist
Construction quality. Make sure that the feeder is made of good quality material and is sturdy and durable. Try to choose a product from a reputable brand and check the warranty provisions.
Easy to hang and clean. During summer months, suet feeders can get a bit messy, and you don’t want to end up with a product that will be a pain to clean thoroughly!
Easy to fill. Snow or sleet, woodpeckers will be there to nibble away at your suet cake. And you’ll appreciate an ‘easy-to-fill’ option during the bitterly cold winter months.
Whether or not the feeder comes with a tail prop.
Good visibility and accessibility. Birds must be able to sight the food from a distance and should be able to access the food without any difficulty.
Size and amount of suet cakes the feeder will hold.
Accessories. It is great to have a feeder that provides some in-built protection for food such as a weather guard, a squirrel proof function, etc. However, these are not absolutely necessary and in any case, you can attach separate weather guards, etc to your feeder if the need arises.
Types of Woodpecker Feeders
As we’ve mentioned just now, there are many different types of woodpecker feeders: the Basic Cage Feeder, Cage Feeders with a Tail Prop, Log Feeder as well as Sunflower Seed and Peanut Feeders. Based on your needs and preferences, you may choose to settle for any one or more of these feeders. However, some kind of suet feeder is a must if you are looking forward to feeding woodpeckers.
Another option not too commonly deployed is to use a large and simple tray feeder where you can place different sorts of foods (shelled/unshelled peanuts, cracked corn, seeds, raisins, fruit slices, dried mealworm as well as a small suet cake helping or suet nuggets). This is an option that you may try if you want to have different species of woodpeckers frequenting your backyard. Although suet is typically well-loved by woodpeckers, not all of these birds may be too keen on it. At any rate, you can experiment!
Top Woodpecker Feeder Brands
Bird’s Choice and Nature’s Way are two brands that enjoy great reputations in the bird-feeding world and they have some nice suet feeders to offer as well. However, when it comes to suet feeders in particular, Stokes and Stovall are two brands that offer a line of innovatively designed, good quality durable products at affordable prices.
– Average Pricing
As you can see from our above list, you can get a good number of quality feeders under $20. However, as is often the case, the more you pay, the better the quality and durability of the product. So, if the price is not a factor, you may just as well go for the higher end products such as the Brome Squirrel Buster ($65) or the Bird’s Choice 2-Cake Suet Feeder ($53) included on our list.
How to Make your Own Woodpecker Feeder DIY
You can find some brilliant ideas on internet on how to make your own DIY woodpecker feeder. You can make all the different types of feeders discussed above. However, the easiest is to prepare a Log Feeder.
Just get yourself a piece of log not too long and not too wide in diameter (refer to the Stovall Log Feeder on our list to get an idea). Though it is not a must, it’s a good idea to render the log so it lasts longer. Drill some large holes across the length of the log. You may also attach some perches, though this is optional. And finally, fit some kind of hanging contraption (made of metal chains, thick twisted wire, etc.) to the log and voila, you’ve your homemade woodpecker feeder all finished and ready to use!
Woodpecker at Your Backyard: Questions and Answers (Q&A)
How do I attract woodpeckers to my yard?
In addition to hanging the feeder (or feeders), put up a nectar feeder in your feeding station as woodpeckers love sweet nectar as well. However, don’t use your hummingbird feeder for this purpose. Woodpeckers have larger peaks, so choose a nectar feeder with larger feeding ports.
As to landscape painting, keep in mind that woodpeckers are commonly attracted to oak and pine trees, for acorns and for nuts and saps, respectively. At the same time, the birds also favor fruit-bearing trees and shrubs.
Smear some tree trunks directly with peanut butter. This trick will go a long way to attract woodpeckers to your ward.
Leave some deadwood snags in your garden. They will provide nice little nesting places for the birds.
What is the best food to feed woodpeckers?
Suet cakes are the most common option. Any variety—store-bought cakes, straight-from-the-butcher and so on—should suffice. However, you may also try suet mixed with fruits, nuts and berries—the birds will love it. [Also refer to our tray feeder options related above.]
Then peanuts are something woodpeckers are highly fond of. However, if you’re giving shelled peanuts, make sure to give unsalted peanuts.
Then, black oil sunflower seeds are another favorite of theirs. Hairies and Downies are known to be particularly fond of them.
What kind of bugs do woodpeckers eat?
Woodpeckers are often thought of as a nuisance in urban or semi-urban areas. However, these birds actually do a great job as a balancing component in woody neighborhoods and organic gardens. This is because woodpeckers are natural exterminators and they would devour all sorts of grubs and insects including bees, flies, mosquitoes, ants, beetles and more.
If you’re looking for an additional feeding option though, it is not practical to use most of these bugs at your feeding station. However, you can always put some freeze-dried mealworms at your tray or platform feeder.
How do I clean my woodpecker feeder?
This will depend on what type of feeder you’re using and the materials they are made of. However, for most suet feeders, you can simply clean them with hot water. Don’t use detergent or soap, although it’ll be okay if you wash the feeder with a diluted bleach water solution or with a water and vinegar mix. Use a brush to clean the metal bars thoroughly and air dry the feeder before putting it up again.