Posted: March 13, 2013, 2:45 p.m. PST
Excerpted from "Feeder Facts” in "Popular Birding Series: Backyard Birding,” published by BirdChannel.com publisher I-5 Publishing LLC.
Hopper bird feeders usually resemble houses, barns or gazebos and often look quite quaint.
When people think of bird feeders, the traditional hopper feeder is generally what they imagine, and this is often a hobbyist’s first feeder. The hopper bird feeder is filled with bird seed that releases on demand into a tray as the seed is eaten. Most hopper bird feeders have clear sides so you can see when the bird seed needs replenishing.
The type of birds that visit your hopper feeder depends on the kind of bird seed you’re offering. Both small and large wild birds can use this feeder. The size of the tray makes perching easy, so wild birds that are reluctant to use other types of bird feeders might use the hopper bird feeder.
The size of the tray makes perching easy, so wild birds that are reluctant to use other types of bird feeders might use the hopper bird feeder.
If you don’t want a lot of bird seed on the ground below the feeder, purchase a tray, or buy a hopper feeder that comes with one installed below it. Ground-feeding species will appreciate the spillover, though, as picky birds kick unwanted seed out of the tray.
When purchasing a hopper bird feeder, make sure that it’s easy to refill. You might have to refill it often, and its placement in your yard might make filling awkward. Also, the hopper bird feeder needs regular cleaning, especially in wet months when bird seed can become moldy.