Deer truly are a mixed bag when it comes to backyards and gardens. Seeing a deer in your yard is a thrill, but if the deer is trampling your flower beds or eating your vegetation, you might want to repel them instead of attracting them. However, there are ways you can lure deer into your area without having to worry about them endangering your landscaping. By building and installing a deer feeder, you control where the deer visit and what they take an interest in on your property. Building a deer feeder is easy and it makes your backyard a pleasant woodland area.
Gather Materials for Building the Deer Feeder
Building your own deer feeder is a lot of fun and more rewarding than purchasing a pre-built feeder. Begin by gathering the materials needed for the feeder. This includes zip ties, a five gallon bucket, PVC piping, and tools such as a drill, a saw, measuring tape, a permanent marker, and a knife. With the bucket on a flat surface, use the marker to draw a straight line around the area about eight inches from the bottom. This line indicates the depth of the bucket. It does not need to be exact in inches, but measure to make sure it is consistent in diameter. Otherwise your feeder will be crooked.
Now you need to use the saw to cut around the line. Once the bucket is cut, you need to drill five or six holes in the bottom. This prevents moisture from building up when there is precipitation. If moisture accumulates in the bottom of the feeder, it can lead to rotting and mold which has an unappealing smell and can be dangerous for the deer to eat. Some of the feed might fall through the hole once it is filled, but it should not be enough to seem wasteful or be a serious problem.
Insert the PVC Piping in the Deer Feeder
Next, cut two slots in the length of PVC piping you have with your supplies. The pipes will be used to dispense the feed to the deer. There should be a slot on each side of the pipe, about three inches long and an inch wide. This creates a dispensing method that works slowly but consistently. Larger holes will result in too much feed dispensing and smaller holes create slower feeding, leaving the deer hungry and frustrated. Finally, put the pipe in the feeder’s base with the cut side down. Mark where the pipe sites and make a small cut in the back with your knife. Thread one of the zip ties through the hole and attach the pipe to the base, pulling tightly to keep the pipe in place.
At this point you can hang your feeder or decorate it to make it more personal. This is also a job a child could do, so if you have kids, let them help by putting their artistic mark on the feeder. Remember, anything too elaborate or bright might drive the deer away, so try not to go overboard. Once your feeder is complete, hang it in a clearing a few feet from the busiest areas of your home and yard. You will also want to choose an area where household pets have no access.