Below you can read about and peruse all types of  easy to install squirrel baffles, a simple accessory to stop squirrels from raiding the birdfeeder. A baffle is an especially useful accessory for those of us that like ornamental or old wooden birdfeeders and not the new squirrel proof ones.  The article includes some homemade squirrel baffles, as well as some tips and videos which remind you about what to remember/consider before purchasing , as well as before installing. To get an idea of what is available you can take a look at the large selection of baffles available by clicking HERE, or looking or clicking on the Amazon window below.

WHEN A SQUIRREL BAFFLE SHOULD BE CONSIDERED

The best method of repelling squirrels at the bird feeder is to choose a proven squirrel proof birdfeeder and to hang it in the best method, and in the best place, to avoid these furry felons from getting on the feeder and cleaning out your seed. However, sometimes this is not always possible for those that already have a non-squirrel proof bird feeder. This is most usually the case with the nice old wooden homemade bird feeders and was my situation because I have a post mounted wooden bird feeder that was built by my departed father and which has sentimental value to me. So while I may go out in the future and buy a new squirrel proof bird feeder, I want to hang on to the old one as long as possible. In the meantime I still want to stop the squirrels from cleaning out the bird seed daily. Squirrel baffles, sometimes known as squirrel guards are a tried and true method of accomplishing this.

WHAT TYPE OF SQUIRREL BAFFLE IS RIGHT FOR YOUR FEEDER: HOW IS YOUR FEEDER HUNG?

Squirrel baffles esentially come in four types.  How your feeder is hung or displayed will determine which type you must choose:

1. Dome shaped squirrel baffles installed above hanging feeders. These have the added benefit of protecting the feeder and seed from the weather;
2. Cylindrical squirrel baffles for feeders mounted on poles;
3. Cylindrical squirrel baffles for feeders mounted on posts, and
4. Torpedo shaped squirrel baffles for feeders mounted on poles.

There are some so called squirrel baffles, e.g. Twirl a Squirrel that actually are electric and twirl the squirrel off the feeder when his weight is applied to the feeder.  However, they are not baffles in the traditional sense. 

HOW SQUIRREL BAFFLES WORK

When you install a squirrel baffle on your bird feeder pole, post, or over a hanging feeder, it creates a physical barrier which squirrels can’t climb or reach around to get to the feeder.  The shape of the baffle makes the squirrel have to reach and the texture of the baffle gives the squirrel nothing to hold on to.  It’s quite a simple but proven product: 

SQUIRREL BAFFLES DO WORK ONLY IF YOU INSTALL THEM CORRECTLY AND CONSIDER SOME OF THESE TIPS

1. If you buy a squirrel baffle for a pole mounted, or a wooden post mounted bird feeder, make sure it is appropriate for the diamater of the pole or post you have your feeder on. Product descriptions will say the diameter of the pole or post the baffle fits. Post mounted baffles are usually for 4 X 4 posts.

2. If you buy a dome shaped squirrel baffle for placing over your hanging feeder remember these only work if the squirrel’s only access to the feeder is from above. If you have the feeder hung so that squirrels can jump on it (they can easily jump 6 feet–see video below) from a nearby branch or structure, this type of baffle will do no good. In such a case re-hang the feeder farther away from lateral adjoining branches, or trim the branches so squirrels can’t reach the feeder from the side. Make sure the ONLY access to the feeder is from above, then install a baffle.

3.  If you mount a squirrel baffle on a pole make sure it is high enough so that thesquirrel can’t jump up on it, or over it, and that there are no nearby objects from which the squirrel can increase his jumping off point. Here is a case in point of in improperly positioned feeder making the baffle ineffective:

4. Also to remember if you buy a domed shaped squirrel baffle is to make sure it is recommended for all types of hanging feeders because some are particular manufactured for specific bird feeders.

5. Make sure any of the hardware for installing the squirrel baffles comes with the product. You dont want to receive the baffle and then have to make another trip for hardware to install it.

HOMEMADE SQUIRREL BAFFLE IDEAS

Here are some of the more unique ideas for making homemade squirrel baffles:
UNDER CONSTRUCTION



THE SQUIRREL PROBLEM

There is nothing more disheartening than seeing your young vegetable seedlings, vegetables, or newly planted flower bulbs being gnawed and chewed to bits by squirrels. There are many commercial squirrel deterrents that come in spray form that are made for use on your garden plants to stop the furry felons. Most, but not all of these commercial products consistently include one ingredient: CAYENNE PEPPER!

ABOUT THE MAIN INGREDIENT: CAYENNE PEPPER/CAPSAICIN

squirrelrepellentrecipes

Since cayenne pepper can be readily purchased for a fairly cheap price, and is safe, it makes it a good candidate for homemade squirrel deterrent remedies that can, at least partially, imitate these store bought products. Squirrels have a tremendous sense of taste and smell and they simply do not like the smell or the taste of heat that comes from cayenne pepper. More accurately, capsaicin,  the substance that gives cayenne its heat.. Therefore, if you are a “do it yourselfer” and don’t want to spend bucks on the commercial products there are several recipes for squirrel repellent sprays, using cayenne pepper or some form of it, that you can make your own and test to see if it is effective for your particular squirrel problem. If it it works, and you get lazy later on, you can then seek out the commercial products which contain cayenne pepper or capsaicin.

DOES CAYENNE PEPPER REALLY WORK?

I was able to locate at least one post where a scientist found that squirrels were highly sensitized to capsaicin and rejected it in parts as low as 1-10 ppm (This is a very low concentration). See http://www.wildlifedamagecontrol.net/feedbirdsnotsquirrels.php   

There is no homemade”magic bullet” that will stop these very agile and smart rodents from ever again munching on one of your plants. However, if you do any research on repelling squirrels the one consistent ingredient you see is cayenne pepper.  Again, it is contained in many of the commercial products designed to keep squirrels away, and which products are guaranteed to work. Even local governmental animal control websites recommend it for squirrel problems. Remember, controlling squirrels has to be part of a squirrel control plan. You can’t simply sprinkle or spray some cayenne pepper or commercial product containing it around your garden once and then say it doesn’t work when you see a squirrel in your garden three weeks later.  It requires vigilance. The succcess of any squirrel repellent remedy is also dependent on things such as weather (rain will require reapplication), squirrel population, and the size of the area sought to be controlled. If  a recipe to keep squirrels away  works for a short period of time and there is intermittent rain, then reapply it.

In summary, some people swear by squirrel repellent products and recipes based upon cayenne pepper and its derivatives, some say it worked moderately (some repellent is better than none!), and fewer say it didn’t work. These recipes are a cheap method of trying for yourself… so what is the harm in trying?

 
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THE RECIPES FOR HOMEMADE “SQUIRREL AWAY” SPRAYS

Below I have included several recipes which you will notice are merely slightly different variations of the same “hot pepper” theme. It all depends on what your hot pepper source is, e.g. cayenne pepper, actual chilie peppers,  jalapeno peppers, or hot sauce. Note: If any of these recipes use cayenne pepper spice instead of a liquid hot sauce strain your “brew” through cheesecloth, even if the recipe doesn’t call for it. Otherwise, your sprayer will get clogged with the larger wet granules of the pepper.

1. Hot Pepper Repellant Spray

This recipe uses yellow onion, an actual jalapeno pepper, and cayenne pepper.  The recipe is at Urban Wildlife Rescue, Inc  Here.

2. Cayenne Pepper Spray

This recipe uses water, Murphy’s Oil Soap, and  cayenne pepper.  See the complete recipe Here.

3. Hot Pepper Spray

This recipe uses only crushed chilies and water. Read it Here.

4. Another Hot Pepper Spray

Using cayenne pepper, water, and horticultural oil. See it Here.

5. Squirrel Repellent Spray

This last recipe uses hot pepper sauce (like Frank’s HotSauce), Water, and a small amount of liquid detergent. You can find the recipe at Evergreen Animal Protecive League Here.


CONCLUSION

Cayenne pepper and capsaicin are at the forefront of anysquirrel repellent product or home brew. The ingredients are cheap, the recipes easy, and it would be worth the time of any gardener who is serious about squirrel squirrel control of just testing one of these recipes. They may actually save some of your vegetables, plants or bulbs! 

REMEMBER: REPEL, BUT BE NICE!



If you are a gardener, birder, or simply a homeowner you have most likely had a problem with the cute but destructive rodents known as squirrels.  When a gardener sees three squirrels gnawing on his newly planted vegetables or digging up his bulbs, or when a birder watches a squirrel sitting on his feeder and cleaning it out of his expensive bird seed, there is a frantic an immediate search for a squirrel repellent to stop (but not hurt,) these animals from their felonious thefts.  I have included a few tips to make such incidents not result in an impulsive and wasteful purchase of a squirrel repellent product.

These products, many of which do work according to reviews, come usually in sprays, powders, or powder packets for use in the yard, garden, and birdfeeder.  Here are a few of my tips before you rush out and buy one in your squirrel induced rage:

 1.     When Shopping Remember the Purpose for Which you Need a Squirrel Repellent

This may seem obvious but you really need to know (actually simply remember) the purpose, and specifically the area, e.g.  vegetable garden, ornamental plants, bulbs, or bird feeder, where you intend to use the squirrel repellent.  Some of the products which may be for “the garden” are meant to be used on ornamental plants and bulbs, but are not safe for the edible vegetable garden.

In the case of bird feeders there may be some more cost effective ways to stop the squirrels from cleaning out your feeder.  This may include a proven “real” squirrel proof feeder or a product that treats the actual bird seed to be squirrel repellent.

Again, sometimes in “rodent induced fury,” many people will rush out, or go online, and buy a spray with the label “Squirrel Repellent” and receive the product only to find out it can’t be used for the purpose for which it is intended. Remembering the specific area for which you intend to use the product will help you buy intelligently, safely, whether you are at the store or online, and may also lead you to explore more economical alternatives which may accomplish the same result.

2.      Make sure the product is  safe for family, pets, birds, outdoor critters, and for the purpose intended

Make sure, even if the product suits your need and area of use, that it is safe for all outdoor animals, your pets, and your family.  I don’t mention this because I assume that consumers will blindly go out and buy a squirrel repellent without reading the label; However, I do mention this because there are products which are safe to repel squirrels away from yard foliage, ornamental plants and bulbs, but are not safe for use on edible vegetable gardens.  Likewise there are squirrel repellents for bird feeders that you would not want to put in your vegetable garden.

Lastly, safety is important because although we want to repel the little thieves, we don’t want to kill them. Read the label carefully in regard to its’ effect on all animals.

3.     Environmental Considerations…Is it safe for the environment?

In today’s age we are all trying to be more “green” and environmentally safe, as we should be.  

It is reassuring that many of the squirrel repellents are made from natural components such as, believe it or not, fox urine. These products prey on the squirrel’s great sense of smell and fear of predators.

However, as this is not the component in all squirrel repellent products, you should make sure to read the label to make sure it is “safe for the environment.”  Very an environmentally approved product will say “EPA Approved” or “EPA Registered.”

In summary, sometimes, even if a product will not kill or harm an animal does not necessarily mean it is something you want soaking into your garden beds for environmental reasons.

4.     Does it work? Don’t spend before you have a good idea!

No point in spending money on any product that doesn’t work, this includes squirrel repellents.  With the age of the internet it is easy, for most products, to find the results others have experienced with the product.

If you are buying directly from any manufacturer who is on the web don’t rely only on permanent “testimonials” on the manufacturer’s website.

If there is a squirrel repellent product that you have “zeroed in on” through a manufacturer’s site you can go to Amazon.com and see if the product is there.  If it is, you can see what others who have purchased the product have said about its’ effectiveness.

There is one caveat to be added to the product reviews when it comes to products relating to squirrel control.  In researching the products I have noticed that there can be 5 reviews with 4 of the reviews swearing that they never had a squirrel in the treated area again and give it a rating of “5 of 5”; the very next review then gives the product a review score of only “1 of 5.”  You should look for a “general consensus of opinion” about whether a squirrel repellent product works rather than one positive review or one negative review.  As you can imagine, the results of products for squirrel control depend on a lot of factors, e.g. the size of the area its is being applied, the squirrel population in the area, etc.

5.     Economical Considerations…Make Sure you Know How Much You Need and  Buy Enough

This really applies to buying any product…products are cheaper in higher volume than they are in smaller amounts.  There is nothing more frustrating than buying a 32 oz. bottle or canister of any product for $19.00 only to find you need another bottle or canister to cover the area which you needed it for.  This is especially true when if you had bought the 64 oz. to start with it would have only cost you $25.00 instead of the $38.00 you eventually paid when you had to go back to the store and buy another one.

I only mention this because people often don’t know how large an area their gardens or flower beds are.  Any squirrel repellent product should have at least the approximate amount of area which the product will treat.  Once you have determined that you need a product and determined which one to buy, make sure you get enough….it is cheaper!  Trust me, treating one area of your garden with a squirrel repellent will not keep the squirrels from the non-treated area.

CONCLUSION

In summary, in order to not waste money you should be educated about any squirrel repellent product you intend to use. It would only take a little time to research such potential purchases on the internet. Read reviews to make sure the general consensus is that the product is effective. Once you have decided on a product that you have concluded is effective and safe for your family, pets, birds, outdoor critters, the environment, AND the purpose intended, e.g. edible vegetable garden, make sure you buy enough because “partial” treatment will do no good. Always explore alternative measures, e.g. a squirrel proof birdfeeder.

Finally, if you do purchase a product please be kind enough to leave us a comment at squirrelrepellent.net, and post a review on a site such as Amazon.com, so others can benefit from the results of your experience.

REMEMBER: REPEL, BUT BE NICE!