This past weekend my husband and I put out our very first blue jay feeder. I was aware that blue jays supposedly “love” peanuts and I was about to find out exactly how much! Also, I had previously read about and even written about the fact that platform feeders are their favorites since they are large birds and enjoy the opportunity to land easily and quickly scope out the perfect peanut but I decided on a feeder that provided protection from the elements and was a sturdy, and aesthetically pleasing design.
I chose the Birds Choice whole peanut feeder. It was pricier than my other options at $51.34 on Amazon but I couldn’t be more pleased with the quality! Also, it is made in the USA (Chilton WI) and created from recycled materials. How awesome is that? The design specs state that it is “constructed with 5/8″ poly-lumber made from recycled plastic jugs and bottles” and per the sticker that came with the packaging, it was actually created by re-using a whopping 26 plastic containers!
Overall, the feeder has excellent construction to include a rust-resistant hinge and stainless steel screws. The panels that hold in the peanuts are a heavy-duty acrylic with 14 holes on each side to dispense peanuts. I honestly thought the blue jays would prefer to just grab a peanut out of the tray at the bottom of the feeder but I saw many grab nuts through the holes in the panels.
I was a little concerned when I opened the box and did not see a way to hang the feeder but quickly realized that the hanging cable was inside of the feeder and that it attached easily through two small holes on each side of the feeder. My husband used a black zip tie to fasten the feeder’s hanging cable to the tree. I had read several reviews that mentioned you would need to make accommodations for the weight of the feeder when hanging it but even with the feeder full of peanuts, the branch did not give way much with the additional weight.
The feeder was also easy to fill and includes a a removable screen tray at the bottom. I did make a bit of a mess when I was pouring peanuts into the feeder as some did shoot out of the holes on each side. Overall, however, it was very easy to fill and I’m sure will clean easily as well. The capacity of the feeder is stated as 2-1/4 quarts capacity.
We hung our feeder on Saturday afternoon and it took several hours before the blue jays realized it was there. Sunday saw a lot of activity as well and by the time Monday morning came around, the feeder was empty of all of its contents. There were several peanuts still on the ground which the blue jays proceeded to inspect for and clean up.
I am super impressed by the maker of the feeder–Birds Choice. Not only are they a member of several reputable organizations to include the Cornell Lab of Ornithology, the National Bluebird Society, and the Purple Martin Conservation Association but they have created a sturdy, and great-looking product I am confident will last for years to come.
I encourage you to get yours today if you are considering attracting blue jays to your backyard oasis!
Image credit: Laura Y. Ceville @BirdHouseLove