Don't toss out that empty milk jug! Turn it into an easy-to-make bird feeder.

What To Do:

  1. For the main entrance to the feeder: Draw and cut out a large circle (about 2 1/2 inches wide) a few inches up from the bottom of an empty, clean gallon milk jug.  
  2. For the perch: Make a small twig-sized hole just below the large one, either with a nail or a hole punch. (See step 5 for adding the perch.)
  3. Brush green acrylic paint on the outside of the jug and let it dry.  Using any clear-drying craft glue, glue leaves onto the outside of the jug.  
  4. Hanger: Punch a hole through both sides of the top just below the cap and slip a wire through it.  
  5. Roof and final touches: Glue about a dozen or so five-inch twigs to each side of the jug's top, as shown. Poke another, thicker twig into the perch hole. Glue on stones, pinecones, pine needles, more twigs, or any other decorations you like. Paint over the leaves with clear non-toxic craft glaze or finish. 
  6. Add birdseed and hang your feeder from a tree branch. (Be sure to put it where you can easily refill it.) 
Now sit back and wait for the birds to discover the newest diner in town!

Craft by Michele Reyzer, Photo by O. Louis Massatenta

This activity was published originally in Ranger Rick magazine, a publication of the National Wildlife Federation. For more activities like this one, check out Ranger Rick’s website.

More from National Wildlife Federation:

Milk jug bird feeder
Turn your empty milk jug into an easy-to-make bird feeder.