Which platform bird feeder is best?
A platform bird feeder attracts all kinds of birds, large and small, to your yard. Not only does this give you the pleasure of watching birds in your own outdoor space, but it’s also great for local wildlife.
You’ll need to consider your garden setup and determine what platform feeder is most suitable. If you have a pole or tree to hang it from, the Woodlink Going Green Platform Bird Feeder is an excellent option.
What to know before you buy a platform bird feeder
Types of platform bird feeders
Not all platform bird feeders are the same. You’ll find four main types: hanging, freestanding, ground and mountable.
- Hanging: Hanging platform feeders have cables attached to all four corners. These cables meet at the top, and you can hang them from a bird feeder stand or a suitable branch. This type of feeder is readily available and reasonably priced.
- Freestanding: Freestanding feeders have their own stands and sit around 3-4 feet off the ground. They’re usually made from wood and can have roofs.
- Ground: Ground platform feeders sit close to the ground. They’re great for attracting ground-feeding birds, such as cardinals and doves. However, they’re not the safest choice for birds if you have cats or other predators that frequent your yard.
- Mountable: Mountable feeders have a bracket that you can affix to a deck railing or a similar piece of fencing. These brackets fix in place without using tools, so they’re easy to install, but they’re only a good option if you have fencing or railings to attach them to.
Most feeders are made from either wood, plastic or metal. Each option has its pros and cons.
- Wood: Wooden feeders look good and have some natural weather resistance, but they will rot and warp over time.
- Plastic: Plastic feeders are often designed to look like wood. They’re weather-resistant, but many buyers prefer to avoid plastic.
- Metal: Metal platform feeders are usually made from mesh, which drains easily but isn’t highly durable.
What to look for in a quality platform bird feeder
Some feeders feature a large platform covered by a roof. This type is sometimes called a fly-through feeder. While it still features a large, flat feeding area, some don’t consider it a true platform feeder because it’s covered. It still gives all but the largest birds access to seed and keeps rainwater out.
The mesh base allows water to drain from the platform. Without this, it will become waterlogged when it rains.
Some birds are attracted to bright colors, but others prefer feeders with a natural hue so that they’re more camouflaged with their surroundings. You’ll usually attract a greater range of birds with a natural-colored feeder.
How much you can expect to spend on a platform bird feeder
Standard platform feeders start at around $10-$20, while large and elaborate feeders can cost over $100. That said, most cost under $50.
Platform bird feeder FAQ
What kinds of birds come to a platform feeder?
A. The beauty of a platform feeder is that it attracts all kinds of birds, from tits and finches to big birds, such as crows and wood pigeons. As such, you’ll often see a greater range of birds on this feeder than on a smaller tube or hopper feeder.
However, this can pose a problem if larger birds start overrunning the feeder, blocking smaller birds. Some people choose to remedy this by placing various feeder types or choosing platform feeders with roofs.
If you want to attract a particular type of bird, consider putting out food they’re drawn to. For instance, goldfinches love Nyjer seeds, while peanuts will attract woodpeckers and northern mockingbirds.
How do you clean a bird feeder?
A. Regularly cleaning your bird feeder is essential to fight the buildup of bacteria and make sure you aren’t providing a breeding ground for bird diseases. While you can clean it with hot, soapy water, it’s better to use a solution of one part household bleach to nine parts water.
Scrub the feeder with a stiff-bristled brush and your cleaning solution. Pay particular attention to the corners of the platform surface, which can be overlooked and harbor bacteria and rotting food.
What’s the best platform bird feeder to buy?
Top platform bird feeder
Woodlink Going Green Platform Bird Feeder
What you need to know: This durable hanging feeder is made from recycled plastic.
What you’ll love: It’s easier to clean and is better at withstanding the elements than wooden feeders. The base is made from a metal screen, so water doesn’t pool. It’s simple to hang from a tree or a pole.
What you should consider: The coating of the metal screen can peel over time.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Top platform bird feeder for the money
Wild Wings Cedar Tray Bird Feeder
What you need to know: This hanging platform feeder is naturally weather-resistant as it’s made from cedar.
What you’ll love: The perforated screen base allows water to drain and is removable to facilitate cleaning. The hanging cables are strong and secure. It holds up to 1.5 quarts of bird seed.
What you should consider: The holes in the screen are large enough for very small seeds to become stuck in or fall through.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
Worth checking out
Gray Bunny Ground Bird Feeder Tray
What you need to know: The compact platform feeder is perfect for birds who live to feed on the ground.
What you’ll love: It’s made from a wire mesh, so water drains easily, and you can hose it down. The legs keep it balanced and raise it slightly off the ground so it won’t get waterlogged.
What you should consider: It’s smaller than some buyers imagine, so check the dimensions to avoid disappointment.
Where to buy: Sold by Amazon
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Lauren Corona writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.
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