Making pinecone bird feeders is a super simple & family-friendly project that will get you outside for a little garden therapy, even in the cold. Backyard birds need food in the winter, especially where it gets cold enough to snow, so take a little time to spread the love (and some peanut butter) for your feathered friends.
- Dried, open pinecones
- Peanut butter
- Garden wire, twine or ribbon
- Mixed birdseed
- Plastic containers or plates, spoons, and scissors
1. Pick out a pinecone that has dried and opened up.
2. Tie a length of wire or twine around the perimeter of the top third of the pinecone and secure firmly. Close the loop at the top by tying a knot or twisting securely, so that the pinecone feeder won’t fall out of the tree when birds are sitting on it.
3. Using a spoon, spread/smoosh/smear peanut butter into the crevices of the pinecone. You don’t need a whole lot of peanut butter; just enough glopped around so it will allow the birdseed to stick.
4. Pour birdseed into container. Place the peanut butter-covered pinecone in the seed and toss the seed over top and all around. Really get in there and pack the seeds into the crevices and stick it to the outsides. The finished product will look like a little seed ball.
5. Decorate with ribbons if you would like, then hang them in the trees and wait for the birds to come. It won’t be long.
What a great idea.
I’ve seen something like this with toilet paper rolls, but this is so much better! The pinecones are from trees (as are birds), they’re nature-y, free (no toilet paper purchase necessary) :) , and reusable.
With the winter storm, I’m home today and enjoying watching the birds feast at our feeders. I’ll have to try this, too, once the weather warms up and I can look for pinecones.
Hiya, Thanks for the idea – I tried making these with my 1 year old and 3 year old – a bit of a challenge as they both just wanted to eat the peanut butter – lol! There was a little bit of peanut butter left over to make some pinecone feeders and the birds in our garden have loved them – especially Woody the greater spotted woodpecker!
As an animal trainer I’m constantly researching and have repeatedly seen reports from vets that small birds can get their mouths stuck shut by peanut butter. And if it has xylitol it’s toxic to some animals. But who knows 🤔
Hi Tammy, great question. I trust Audubon as a source for all things wild birds, and they suggest peanut butter as a wild bird fat source. https://www.audubon.org/news/11-tips-feeding-backyard-birds