The best bird feeders: attract feathered visitors to your outdoor space

How much better is a garden filled with wildlife! The best bird feeders will ensure your garden is an instant hit with the birds

Best bird feeders
(Image credit: Future)

A garden that attracts wildlife is a more interesting place, so having one of the best bird feeders will ensure that birds form an important part of the mix of creatures you can expect to see out there.

The best bird feeders will help provide a warm welcome for feathered friends, and we’ve found the top picks around so you can get yourself ready for your new guests. Whichever style of feeder you prefer, we’ve got a design you’ll love.

Ready to add more wildlife to your garden? Scroll down for feeders you and the birds will appreciate, then head to our wildlife garden ideas for more ways to encourage creatures into your garden. 

The best bird feeders

best bird feeder showing a glass globe style design

(Image credit: John Lewis)

1. Eva Solo Window Bird Feeder

Best bird feeder: our number one because it fits into even the tiniest garden

Best for: Up-close observation
Materials: Rubber, glass and stainless steel
Dimensions : Dia.14.5 x D5.5cm
Reasons to buy
+Window mounted+Fabulous view for you
Reasons to avoid
-For small birds only

Even if your garden is just a balcony or micro patio you can feed the birds with this neat design.

Ring-size seat

This feeder goes on your window, and is made from glass so you’ll get an unimpeded view of your visitors.

Small opening

The feeder has space for small birds only so that they feel safe while feeding.

Contemporary style

The design is barely there, so as well as leaving the focus on your avian snackers, it will complement a contemporary garden design.

  • Buy the Eva Solo Window Bird Feeder

house-shaped metal bird feeder

(Image credit: Robert Dyas)

2. Robert Dyas Smart Garden Beach Hut Seed Feeder

Best coastal-style bird feeder: a cute design in a pretty colourway to please you and the birds

Best for: Country and classic garden styles
Materials: Metal
Dimensions: H30 x W18 x D11cm
Reasons to buy
+Hand-painted finish+Blends in+Holds standard birdseed
Reasons to avoid
-Not for modern spaces

Hang this feeder from a branch or hook: it comes with a hanging handle ready to fix up.

Natural colourway

The design makes this a good-looking addition to your garden, and the green painted finish ensures it blends with foliage.

Just add seed

It’s designed to be filled with standard birdseed, and the windows allow you to see when your visitors are running low on food.

Made to last

In metal, this sturdy model should do its job and look good for a long time.

  • Buy the Robert Dyas Smart Garden Beach Hut Seed Feeder

modern cage shaped metal bird feeder

(Image credit: B&Q)

3. Peckish Secret Garden Steel Seed Squirrel-proof Bird Feeder

Best bird feeder for preventing theft: make sure the birds don’t lose out to other visitors

Best for: Small birds only
Materials: Steel
Dimensions: H34 x Dia.20cm
Reasons to buy
+Clear seed tube+Squirrel and big bird-proof+Suitable for birdseed mixes
Reasons to avoid
-You want to feed big birds

If the squirrels and the magpies have been getting the lion’s share, protect the smaller birds’ supply with this feeder.

Keep out

This design allows small birds to eat because they can access the inner feeder while big birds and squirrels can’t. 

Clear tube

You’ll be able to see when this feeder needs filling thanks to the transparent central section – and the birds will be able to see there’s food for them.

Easy positioning 

Hang the feeder from a tree or place it in a high spot where the birds won’t be disturbed. 

  • Buy the Peckish Secret Garden Steel Seed Squirrel-proof Bird Feeder

column shaped bird feeder

(Image credit: Marks & Spencer)

4. Marks & Spencer Giant Seed Bird Feeder

Best multi-bird feeder: welcome a crowd to your garden with an eight port design

Best for: Lots of birds at once
Materials: Metal
Dimensions : H40 x Dia. 17cm
Reasons to buy
+Eight ports+Quick-release base+Seed-catch tray+Easy to clean
Reasons to avoid
-Needs plenty of seed

Made from metal, this design will allow lots of birds to get nutrition at one time, and looks good, too.

No plastic

This metal bird feeder is designed to be strong and durable, and doesn’t include any plastic parts. The hanging wire is made from strong stainless steel.

Room for eight

There are eight ports for birds to feed at and each has a landing perch so they can do so easily.

Straightforward care

The base is quick release and there’s a tray to catch seed, making this feeder easy to clean and to keep hygienic for your small flying visitors.

  • Buy the Marks & Spencer Giant Seed Bird Feeder

column shaped bird feeder from Amazon

(Image credit: Amazon)

5. Jacobi Jayne Niger Seed Bird Feeder

Best bird feeder for finches: entice a flock to your plot with a specially made design

Best for: Goldfinches
Materials: Plastic
Dimensions: L18cm
Reasons to buy
+Ideal for finches and small birds+Comes filled with niger seed+UV-resistant plastic+Snap-off base 
Reasons to avoid
-Not for other types of birdseed

If it’s finches, and other small birds like siskin and redpoll you’d like to see in your garden, tempt them with this feeder.

Small birds

Goldfinches and other sorts of finch along with other small birds love the niger seed this feeder is designed to hold, and it comes ready filled so you can start attracting them right away.

Hang up

Suspend the feeder from its stainless-steel hook. The feeder itself is made from plastic that’s UV resistant to avoid cracking or discolouring from the sun.

Simple filling

The base of the design snaps off ready for refilling, and the feeder is easy to clean as well.  

  • Buy the Jacobi Jayne Niger Seed Bird Feeder

column shaped bird feeder

(Image credit: Amazon)

6. Peckish All Weather Suet and Peanut Metal Bird Feeder

Best bird feeder for cold weather: feed high energy suet during the winter months

Best for: Feeding suet and peanuts
Materials : Metal
Dimensions : L30cm
Reasons to buy
+Can be used for suet pellets or peanuts+Quick-release base+Easy-to-remove lid
Reasons to avoid
-Not suitable for small seed

You can use this feeder to give the birds suet in winter and peanuts the rest of the year if you want, as it’s suitable for both.

Capacity crowd

You can put around 700g of suet or peanuts into this feeder, which is 30cm tall.

Think hygiene

The base is quick release to allow you to clean this feeder easily, while the lid it easy to remove for refilling as the birds get through their food.

Durable finish

The metal top of the feeder is made from powder-coated metal as is the base, and the tube is perforated steel. The result? This design should stand up to all weathers.

  • Buy the Peckish All Weather Suet and Peanut Metal Bird Feeder

bird feeder in the shape of a Robin

(Image credit: Amazon)

7. Wildlife World Ceramic Robin Feeder

Best fun bird feeder: hang a robin to feed the robins with this quirky choice

Best for : Novelty
Materials: Ceramic and alloy steel
Dimensions: H16 x W11 x D20cm
Reasons to buy
+Easy to fill+Frost-resistant ceramic+Comes with hanging wire
Reasons to avoid
-Beware squirrels

Add this cute feeder to your garden to attract robins (of course) plus blue tits, great tits and other small birds.

Care counts

This feeder is simple to fill, and has drainage holes inside to keep the food dry. Cleaning’s a breeze, too.

Cold weather

The ceramic feeder is frost resistant so you can keep flying visitors in nourishment during the winter.

Tree hanging

A rust-proof stainless steel cord keeps the feeder in place, and it’s a great ornament to have in the garden as well as a useful feeder.

  • Buy the Wildlife World Ceramic Robin Feeder

How to choose the best bird feeders

Birds have preferences when it comes to how they feed and what they feed on, and you may have design preferences to take into consideration, too, when you’re selecting a feeder.

Types of feeder

To nourish small birds like finches, tits and siskins, go for a seed feeder. If it’s the niger seeds beloved of goldfinches and others, you’ll need a specially designed feeder as the seed is small.

Feeders that are designed to hold peanuts could attract woodpeckers and nuthatches as well as tits.

If you like the idea of feeding suet – which is energy dense and particularly vital in winter months – you’ll need a feeder designed for suet pellets or balls or blocks.

Feeder materials

Bird feeders are generally made from metal or plastic. Metal could stand up better to squirrels. 

Refilling and cleaning

Check out how easy the feeder is to refill. Hygiene is important, too, so look for a design that’s easy to keep clean. 

Feeder style

Feeders range from the more utilitarian that are entirely about suiting the birds and their food, easy cleaning and filling and simple hanging to designs that have the style of your garden in mind as well as its visitors’ preferences. In the latter category, styles include rustic, quirky, and those with clean modern lines so you can complement the rest of your outdoor space as well as keeping birds happy. 

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