How to Keep Raccoons Out of Hummingbird Feeders

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Things You'll Need

  • Twine

  • Gloves

  • Pole

  • Cooking oil

Raccoons are unwelcome guests at hummingbird feeders.

When you think of raccoons and food, you probably think of them knocking over trash cans or stealing pet food. In fact, they are also well known robbers of syrup from hummingbird feeders. Hummingbirds will not visit a feeder if a raccoon is near it. The raccoons will also leave behind germs that could prove unhealthy for you and your family. It will take some work, but there are some constructive ways to discourage the raccoon from even trying to get at the feeder.


Step 1

Cut a length of twine long enough to stretch between two trees. Tie it to a tree branch and stretch it across to a second tree. Tie the loose end off on the second tree. Hang the hummingbird feeder on the twine, which will not be strong enough to support the weight of raccoons.

Step 2

Install a raccoon baffle, which is anything that makes it difficult for the raccoon to reach the feeder, around poles or tree trunks. Use a hammer and nail to attach a piece of stove pipe around small trees or poles. A fence around a larger tree could prevent raccoons from reaching the trunk in the first place.


Step 3

Place the hummingbird feeder on a metal pole in an area with no trees or fences nearby. Every three or four days, rub cooking oil on the entire pole. The oil not only makes it difficult for the raccoon to climb the pole, but raccoons dislike the feel of oil in their fur.


Consider trapping the raccoons to remove them once and for all. However, there are regulations about moving and trapping wildlife. Before you trap anything, contact local and state wildlife agencies to find out what regulations and restrictions apply in your area.



Erin Ringwald

Erin Ringwald began writing in 1998. She runs her own party planning business and helps with her husband's photography business. She's working on her Master of Education with a focus on elementary education and child development. Ringwald studied musical theater and later obtained a Bachelor of Arts in English literature from Wright State University.