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How to make easy pine cone bird feeders

Remember the buckets of fallen pine cones we gathered in October to use as fire starters?  I had a few left over and decided to make some easy pine cone bird feeders.  Here is what you will need:

8 Pine cones
2 cups millet or your favorite variety of bird seed
1/2 cups raw peanuts, chopped
1/3 cup peanut butter 
3/4 cup lard
1/4 cup bacon fat (optional)
Floral wire 

  • Cut 8 equal pieces of floral wire, each about six inches in length.  Twist the floral wire tightly around the middle of each pine cone, leaving two equal ends, about 3 1/2 inches in length (these will be used for fastening the finished feeder to a tree branch.)
  • Mix together the millet seed and peanuts in a shallow bowl or pie plate. Set aside.
  • In a medium saucepan, combine the peanut butter, lard and bacon fat.  Heat on medium and stir until completely melted.  Remove from heat.
  • Hold the pine cone by the two wires and dip it into the melted fat mixture. Let any excess fat drip off.  Then, roll the pine cone in the seed/nut mixture until well coated.  Use a large spoon to fill the inside of the pine cone.
  • Place each finished feeder on a cookie rack to dry.  Place a cookie sheet under the rack to catch any excess fat or loose seeds.
  • Put the cookie rack full of feeders in to the refrigerator to harden.  Let chill for several hours.
  • When the feeders are firm, carefully twist them on to tree branches.

For more interesting farm articles, please visit me at A Rural Journal!

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