There is no need to worry about discouraging backyard birds by stabilizing a pole from which feeders hang, as this is likely to scare away the birds if they witness the pole swaying in the wind or moving at random.
If your bird feeder pole is swaying due to the wet ground, you can prevent it from shifting by mounting an additional metal post or wooden plank and burying the pole further into the earth. The grass can be dug out and replaced with gravel, or the pole can be sunk into a planter above ground.
Any swaying of the bird feeding station or Shepherd’s Hook pole will scare away the birds and defeat the purpose of having them there.
By driving the pole deeper into the earth, you can avoid the instability that comes from working with soggy soil.
Don’t be hasty; if you bury the pole too deeply, the bird feeders you hang from it will be too low to the ground, and if the pole is too short, a squirrel baffle can’t be put to prevent squirrels from scaling it.
The solution is to attach a 3- to 4-foot metal pole or a wooden plank to the base of your bird feeder pole.
The original pole of the bird feeder station will be sunk a foot or less into the earth, while the rest of the plank or metal pole will be impaled deeply into the ground.
The process of replacing soft, soggy turf with compacted stone gravel and burying the original bird feeder pole in it is not dissimilar.
It’s much better if you can elevate the pole of your bird feeder so that it sticks out of the ground.
The solution is to place the gravel in a tall plastic bucket, a wooden barrel, or a planter, but make sure the pole is not buried in the grass by placing it a couple of feet above the ground.
One advantage is that a pole inserted into a bucket is easily moved to a new site if necessary.
Without taking the time, money, and effort to stabilize a bird feeder pole, you may notice that the birds avoid your feeders.
While a straight pole is preferable, backyard birds won’t be put off by a little crooked one; movement is what drives them away, not the feeder itself.
Mount plank to extend pole
Your bird feeder pole will be difficult to stabilize because the spot where it was impaled is likely to be soggy due to recent heavy rains.
Don’t risk your life by attempting to avoid crossing a flooded region. As an alternative, you can prioritize dropping your bird feeder pole deep below the saturation level by increasing the length of your bird feeder pole.
You only need a 3- to 4-foot piece of wood, another metal pole, or even an old clothesline pole, so there’s no need to stress about it.
First, you’ll need your bird feeder pole. Next, you’ll need some wire and a drill to attach the extension to the pole about a third of the way up.
Don’t make your bird feeder pole look unattractive by attaching a wooden plank or extra pole too high in the air.
To solve this problem, you should bury the extension piece to a great depth (up to four feet if possible), while just sinking the primary bird feeder pole into the earth a short distance.
It is impossible to maintain a bird feeder pole’s stability in waterlogged soil, but you can get underneath the moisture by sinking the pole far deeper into the earth than is customarily advised.
A bird feeder pole that is extended 3–4 feet into the earth won’t budge, regardless of whether the ground is dry or saturated.
Sink pole deeper at ground level
Instead of figuring out how to attach an extension to a metal pole, you may do better with less effort by using a magnetic pole adapter.
You could drive the pole into the ground by hand or with a foot stomp, but it’s more practical to use an ax. Instead of burying the pole in the ground, an elevated platform might provide the necessary stability for the bird feeder.
What you end up with is a tall plastic bucket, a stylish wooden barrel, or a garden planter filled with soil or gravel and a pole for a bird feeder.
Put the bowl you’ll be sinking the pole into at a place in your yard where it will be easily accessible to you and the wild birds you want to attract.
To make a more compact substance to keep a top heavy pole stable, position the barrel, bucket, or planter where you want it, and then fill it with turf or a weight of gravel.
To avoid impaling the pole into a hard to penetrate gravel, which you will only find out after the fact, fill the bucket while your bird feeder pole is centered and in position.
Although a bird feeder placed on a pole above the ground may be out of reach for some birds, its visibility from farther away may attract more visitors.
Bury bird feeder pole into dry gravel
Bring the bird feeder pole down to ground level again, and consider using compact gravel instead of soggy grass to give it more stability.
You might use this method since it’s convenient and inexpensive.
You might remove as much as a square foot of grass and as much as two feet of mud. Proceed cautiously, as you’ll want to maintain order and have the option of re-laying the lifted lawn layer.
One foot of dry gravel is all that has to be added to the empty hole (which is where the bird feeder pole will go, by the way).
Then, with the aid of a kid or your significant other, you may place the pole of the bird feeder in the middle while holding it steady at a ninety-degree angle.
After positioning the bird feeder pole in the hole, filling in the hole is the final step.
While you are filling the hole with gravel, take a few steps into the hole at regular intervals to crush the gravel with the soles of your shoes. It’s important to pack the gravel into the hole so the pole doesn’t shift over time.
Once the hole is partially filled, you can use water to improve the compaction at regular intervals.
You’ll be left with a square foot of dry gravel that’s at lawn level, which you may disguise by covering it with the turf you spared.
Benefits of stabilization
There are a number of reasons why you should maintain a steady pole for your bird feeder, but in the end, you’re probably just doing it for the birds that visit your backyard regularly.
The hassle of pole stabilization is outweighed by the benefits, but it still needs to be done.
Do it for nothing; if you want it to be stable, though, you may have to pay more; just don’t run out and buy anything before you have a good idea of how much you’ll need.
If a simple white plastic bucket stands out too much in your garden, you may either splurge on a fancy barrel to pierce the bird feeder in or cover it with paint.
The birds will thank you in the end, but it’s important to be careful as you carry out this necessary task. That being said, let’s examine why it’s worth your time and money to secure a metal pole for a bird feeder.
The birds won’t fly away if you try to shake them.
One reason is that if the pole holding a bird feeder is shaky, the birds will avoid using it.
The pole may unexpectedly go over if the wind catches the bird feeders while the birds are feeding, or if the birds are resting on the pole.
If you want to keep the birds at your feeder and not scare them away, you should secure the pole. As birds are easily frightened away, it’s important to keep the pole secure from the get-go to prevent them from leaving and never coming back.
The pole holding the feeders may lean, causing the feeders to hang dangerously near to the ground, which can be dangerous for the birds.
Less likely to drop bird seed
You may not have recognized it, but hanging bird feeders will lose their contents if they are attached to an unsteady pole, such as one that is constantly seen to shift.
You might not notice anything unusual at first, and it might not happen right away, but eventually you might look down and be perplexed by the mess under your bird feeders and wonder what caused it.
Maintaining a steady pole is the obvious solution to preventing a tangled mess from developing beneath your bird feeder.
Bird feeders can be tipped over with the simple act of hanging them back up, but if the pole is seen to tilt noticeably every once in a while, I can promise you that the seeds will be squandered more often than not.
Feeders keep from falling to the floor.
The primary concern in securing a wobbly pole for a bird feeder is avoiding a catastrophic collapse of the entire unit.
Always hang your bird feeders at a height of four or five feet from the ground, and if you ever catch sight of any of them descending to ground level, take immediate action.
If you have an issue with an unstable bird feeder, you can take a quick measurement with a tape and then check it whenever you notice any movement in the pole. Alternatively, you could follow this rule after you’ve fixed the problem to keep it from happening again.
The unsteady pole holding up the bird feeder can only lean to one side, but if it is allowed to lean in any direction, such as owing to the direction of the wind, the hole it has sunk in would progressively widen, eventually leading to a complete collapse.
Adding an extra pole, wooden plank, or unused metal clothesline to the bird feeder pole through wire can be a simple but labor-intensive alternative.
The result can be a bird feeder pole that is 10 feet in height instead of 6 feet, allowing you to dig the pole even deeper into the earth when burying it.
This is done because otherwise the pole would have to be sunk a considerable distance into the ground—possibly as much as three feet—in order to avoid being suffocated. If the ground is too wet, the pole holding up the bird feeder could topple over, thus it should be buried farther.
The original bird feeder can only be buried a foot deep before it is considered as invading the turf.
You can also achieve the same effect by sinking the pole of the bird feeder into a bucket, barrel, or garden planter, above ground level this time.
On top of that, you can add dry turf or, why not, dry compact gravel to fill the bucket or planter.
To prevent a bucket or planter from tipping over, I wouldn’t recommend placing gravel above ground.
Create a sturdy, short-term base by excavating a hole one square foot in size and two feet in depth, filling it halfway, positioning the bird feeder pole, and then filling it to the top with the rest of the gravel while compacting it.