Chirpy Chirpy Cheep Cheep

Where’s your mamma gone – where’s your mamma gone, little baby Don, little baby Don ,far, far away.

Apologies that song has been in my head all day, like an ear worm, so I decided to pass it on to you :0  If you’re too young to remember the song, have a look on you tube – it is a 1970s addiction!

The reason for my strange musical interlude is that we have been making bird feeders – hence the chirpy chirpy cheep cheep, being in my head.

Anyway we are surrounded by pine trees and I have a multitude of pine cones once again and there are only so many things that I can use them for.  We make Christmas decorations, we fill baskets around the house with them.  I add scent to them and at this time of year, I do a bit of alchemy and turn them into “magic” colour changing fire lighters.  What happens is that by adding different things to the pine cones, they will then change the colour of the flames in your fire.  So I have red, green, blue, purple and bright white flames.

I am still always left with tons of them, so today we decided to make pine cone bird feeders.  I have regular style bird feeders and now that it has gotten considerably colder and the fruit from our orchard is gone, it’s time to feed the birds again.  We do now though have a couple of squirrels in the garden, so the feeders get raided regularly.  I could go out and change all our feeders for squirrel proof ones.  However, I have too many other priorities for our money right now and the girls do love seeing the cheeky squirrels up close.  So I have decided to compromise with the squirrels.  I’ve filled a couple of the feeders with peanuts and the rest with seed.  Adding the pine cone feeders, should also make sure that the birds are getting plenty to eat.

These are cheap and very easy to make, plus our eldest daughter had a great time making them.

What you need are a few of the largest pine cones you can find.  The softer more closed varieties work really well.
A jar of peanut butter – I bought a big jar of Sainsburys Basics for 62p.
Wild Bird seed – I bought an enormous bag at our local pet supplies store for £8.00, it should last through most of the winter.
String and some newspaper to catch the mess.

Spread out your newspaper.  Tie some string around the middle of your pine cone.  Make sure the string is long enough for tying around a branch etc.  Pour some bird seed into a dish or bowl. Coat your pine cone in peanut butter (this is messy, but fun).  Roll the peanut butter pine cone in the bird seed.  Shake off any excess back into your dish and that’s it, you’re done.  Hang the feeder in your desired location (High enough to avoid cats)

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