A Backyard Bird Feeder

Good Morning Friends! 

What do you get when you cross a funnel with a dog bowl? 

Give up? Well it's a bird feeder of course! 😂 

I've been wanting to make a bird feeder for a long time and today I got the inspiration of a lifetime! I'm no bird expert but I'm calling this an experiment. 

Take a look...

bird feeder and flowers

I've been watching birds in my backyard lately, there are all kinds. They say you know you're old when you develop a keen interest in bird watching and I think they're right! 

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I have a beautiful cardinal that visits my deck every morning. He stands on the same chair every day! I took this picture through the window. I like to think my Dad is sending me a message 💞

cardinal on a chair

I've been thinking lately about feeding the birds but so far have only made a dozen or so bird houses for them. 

Today I made a trip to PetSmart for dog food and while I was perusing the aisles, I ran across this beautiful bird feeder! 

Pet Smart bird feeder on shelf

I loved it! But not for $30! I mean well maybe... if I didn't just realize that I have the perfect parts in mind to make it myself! I took note of the distance between the dish and the top along with a few other measurements before I left. 

As soon as I got home I got to work. I am actually going to try this bird feeder 2 ways. I'm not a bird expert by any means but I'm pretty sure I can duplicate the one in the store so here goes...

I looked around for the parts... a very large funnel and a dog dish! I am wondering if the dog dish isn't flat enough but I'm going to give it a try. If it doesn't work I have a wooden bowl that I will replace it with. 

funnel and dog dish

I drilled a hole in the center of the dog dish from the bottom. 

bottom of dog dish and drill

Next, I searched for a 1" dowel in my wood pile and I had a piece that used to be from a quilt rack I repurposed at one time. 

I cut the dowel to the length I wanted to give the birds enough room but to still keep the food dry when it rained. It was about 8" long. 

miter saw cutting dowel

One side of the dowel already had a screw hole so I drilled a hole in the other end too. My dowel was painted green already so I am leaving it that color. 

dowel with drilled hole

I used a screw from the bottom of the dog dish through the bottom of the dowel and screwed it tight. 

dowel on dog dish

Now it was time for the other end, I found a large screw eye in my hardware drawer I am going to use for the top. 

I placed the funnel over the top of the dowel and tried the screw eye out for size. 

screw eye in funnel

It was perfect but it left a hole where water could get in so I drilled a hole in a candle cup and placed it on top of the funnel. 

wooden candle cup with screw eye

Then I screwed the screw eye into the top. It was a tight and secure fit! The funnel was also just slightly larger than the dog bowl like the one in the store. 

Now it was time to paint the bird feeder. I taped up the top of the funnel and placed a scrap piece of fabric into the stainless steel bowl so it would not get painted. 

taped up bird feeder and spray paint

 I used a flat black spray paint to paint the funnel with 2 coats. 

And that's it! 

bird feeder with funnel top

All I had to do now was to hang the bird feeder in my yard. 

bird feeder on shepherds hook

I'm hanging it on a shepherd's hook for now to see if it will be safe from animals. 

bird feeder on shepherd's hook with flowers

Please pin for later --->> 

bird feeder with overlay

hanging bird feeder

I filled it with bird seed and now I wait to see if the birds will love it as much as I do! I think the birds will like it fine! 

bird feeder with bird seed


If not I have a dog that is very interested in the bird seed I dropped... or maybe he is after the dog dish! 

bird feeder with flowers and dog

Now like I said, I'm not a bird expert but 2 days later no birds have been seen eating from my feeder. 

I am thinking maybe the dog dish is too deep so I am going to try another dish. This one is a shallow basket made of a plastic material. 

bird feeder and dog

The switch was as simple as removing the bottom screw and screwing the basket on. It is definitely as cute or cuter than the dog dish version. I'm pretty sure Sam thinks this might be a better idea. 

hanging bird feeder and a shutter

I'm hanging it back up with the new base, surely a bird will stop by for a snack and I'll get a picture! 

bird feeder with a basket


bird feeder with bird seed

Good news! I saw some birds looking to try it out! 

bird feeder on shutter

Update: I moved the bird feeder around several times and this morning... they found it! My family of cardinals in my backyard were in and out of the feeder all morning! 

bird in feeder

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thank you


I am Susan, the author and creator at Homeroad. I am a wife, mother of 4 daughters, and a grandmother of 5 and counting. I am a retired teacher, a DIY blogger and an artist at heart. .