A friend of mine recently told me he'd had to take his feeders down because of the squirrels, and since his birthday is coming up in a few weeks I thought I'd get him one of these cages... but now I can't find them anywhere.
Amazon, the RSPB shop and every wild bird supplier in the UK seems to have stopped stocking them... but they do have cages with the feeder already fixed inside the cage.
I don't want this... I prefer to be able to change the feeder whenever I want, or to even wire a mesh dish to the inside of the cage for things like suet pellets or mealworms depending on the season. The fixed-feeder cages are (surprise surprise!) of course two or even three times the cost of the cage alone.
I find it so annoying- something that worked really well has been discontinued in favour of something that's more expensive, much harder to clean and is less flexible as to its use.
I could give him one of mine, of course... but I don't think a second-hand slightly rusty bird cage is much of a birthday present!
Thanks for the suggestions, Teasel and Dave... the problem with those feeders are that they don't come apart like the squirrel blocking cage, which makes it impossible to attach a mesh tray to the bottom of the inside.
Also, cost is a big factor for me- by the time I bought one of those for £30, (they'll have postage on top of that) plus a mesh tray... another £6, probably- and then post it to him, (another £10) the overall total will be approaching £50! I simply can't do that... not for a bird feeder.
I'll just have to hold out and keep looking; maybe someone will start stocking the two-part cages again.
I always put lids on my cages, (the sort normally used on galvanised chicken feeders) and since I have two spare ones I'll fix one of those to the top of it and then a mesh tray in the bottom. Once it arrives and I get it all assembled I'll post a photo of it. It takes a bit of fiddling.
I am having similar problems, not with squirrels but crows and jackdaws. I have two peanut feeders, two fatball feeders and two seed feeders and they have them decimated within an hour. The other day I counted fourteen squawking and squabbling crows - the small birds don't get a chance. I used to have a couple of squirrel proof feeders but stopped using them as they weren't very good quality and were difficult to keep clean. I think I need to look into some of the options you guys have posted.
I'm starting to think there is a conspiracy in regards to squirrel-proof feeders! I can't find the Chapelwood ones anywhere, and they were so useful.
All that seems to be available are those 'all in one' styles, which are as Shalebing said VERY difficult to clean. Plus, they are not versatile- I want to be able to put inside the cage whatever feeder suits and I can change them depending on the season, (I don't feed fatballs in the summer- they go soft.)
This is the only one I could find anywhere... it would certainly keep your crows at bay.
With the cages I already have, I put one of these chicken feeder lids on top- they keep the food drier, and because they are slippery it prevents pigeons from perching on top and pooping all over the feed and cage. They are tough- made from recycled tyres, I think.
It doesn't come with a hole in the top, but I simply heat the point of a barbeque skewer on the stove until it's really hot and the push it through the lid until it will accomodate a small chain.
I like the frame of that one- it looks like it's made from really good strong wire, but the problem is you have to buy one of their feeders to hold the whole thing together. (I did have a plastic dish like that on one of my nyjer feeders, and it kept filling up with water.) Overall it looks like a good cage, though... I'd consider that one if I could think about how to find a base to attach to it, because the price isn't bad.