Must Haves


Tested and Trusted Products for Backyard Birders

Our Must Have products are the items that Lindy uses in her own backyard. She puts every product through her own rigorous quality tests that determine value, durability, sustainability, safety and use by her feathered (and furry) friends. She offers honest and non-biased opinions based upon her own experiences.

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Best Bird Feeders


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    This versatile and sturdy deck mount bird bath was actually my first bird feeder back in 2019. It was the item that introduced me to the wonderful world of wild birds right outside my kitchen window. I love this bird bath/feeder and recommend it often!

    In terms of design, there are a couple of features that make it better than other, even more expensive competitive products. The first is the durable, adjustable clamp. It’s made of strong, weather-resistant black powder coated steel to prevent rust. It’s attached to the steel bowl ring in one solid piece.

    What makes this bird bath a favorite is the heavy-duty polypropylene clay-colored bowl with a ridged lower lip that fits with a secure “click” into the supporting ring. When it gets windy (and it does here in New Jersey), the bowl doesn’t blow away. And when it’s full of bird and furry friend traffic at lunchtime, the bowl stays right in place.

    I’ve read some reviews and seen reader photos where the bowl tips as the clamp isn’t secured to a level surface. Simply insert a wooden shim as you’re adjusting the clamp to solve that problem and bring your item level. If you’re using this for bird food, remember there are no drainage holes. You’ll need to clean out any wet or old food to prevent mold or spoilage.

    My first bowl lasted about two years before I had to replace it. I couldn’t find a way to replace just the bowl, so I had to buy the whole unit again. I left the ring clamp up on the deck and it’s enthusiastically used as a bird perch.

    This is one of my top choices for a bird bath, a bird bowl feeder, or a gift for a bird lover.


    Buy at Amazon

    This is one of my favorite go-to feeders for year-round use. It holds a full 6 pounds of seed and is easy to clean. It attracts a huge variety of birds with its six generous feeding ports. The 12-inch coated looped hanging cord does not rust and works with deck clamps, shepherd hooks, tree branches and more. As of 2021, the feeder costs under $12.00.

    I have used these feeders for two years and I see little wear from sun and weather. The drainage trays are well constructed and help keeps seeds dry. The overhanging plastic roof provides limited protection from the elements.

    The closing feature requires a little practice to get the roof to close snugly, but once you get the hang of it, you won’t have squirrels flipping up the top to rob you of your seeds. This feeder has a much better closing system than feeders than just rely on flimsy plastic tabs or easy-to-open flip tops.

    You can fill this workhouse feeder with black oil sunflower seeds, safflower, cracked corn, and mixed seed varieties. As your feathered visitors stop by for a meal, the feeder may sway a bit causing some seed to fall away from the tray ports. Fear not! That will provide you with a nice way to view your ground feeding birds. Plan your housekeeping accordingly.

    If you are just starting out as a birding enthusiast, pair up this feeder with a shepherd hook and some black oil sunflower seed to create a budget-friendly, bird feeding magnet!


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    Buy at Lowes Pair with a shepherd's hook Don't forget your sunflower seed