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Feed the birds

Now that it is getting colder, it is time to think about providing food for your garden birds. These feeders would make a lovely gift or even help with fundraising for a larger project at your school.

You will need: Offcuts of timber decking or a wooden pallet, a piece of cardboard cut from the front or back of a cereal packet or box, saw, sandpaper, tape measure, pen, Resene testpots (I used Get Reddy, Orang-atan, Fizz, Splat, Unicorn, Ballerina and Dizzy Lizzy.), paintbrushes, screws, nails, hammer, screwdriver.

This colourful project is great for the school holidays as you can paint inside on a rainy day. As well as helping the birds, the feeders will add lots of colour to your winter garden too.

To keep costs low ask around for offcuts of decking timber or try using wooden pallets.

Paint tips: When choosing colours, it’s generally best to avoid light colours as they will tend to show up marks sooner. For extra shimmer and shine, use a Resene FX Metallic testpot for details. If you want a more natural look to blend into a backyard, Resene wood stains come in testpots too and can be applied directly to the timber.

As seen in kiwigardener

Step 1 Step one
Your cereal packet will have a 90-degree angle, or right angle triangle, on its corners. Use this angle to mark a 90-degree angle at the end of your longest piece of decking timber.
Step 2 Step two (a)
With adult supervision, saw off the marked corners.
Step 2Step two (b)
This piece of wood will become the back of your bird feeder. I made mine 22cm long, as shown.

Step 4 Step three
Use a sheet of sandpaper to smooth down the sawn edges.

Step 4 Step four (a)
Use smaller pieces of timber offcuts to form the roof and base.

Step 4Step four (b)
Each house will be different depending on the size of timber you have available.

Step 5 Step five
Cover your work surface with newspaper to protect it and give all the pieces of wood a coat of paint – not forgetting the edges. Leave them to dry and then paint to other side too.

Step 6 Step six (a)
With the help of an adult use either nails or screws to assemble the feeder.

Step 6Step six (b)
Add a nail to the back panel to push apple cores onto.
Step 7 Step seven
Fasten your feeder in place. I put mine on the post of my bird table, but they would be lovely and bright on a fence or wall too. You could also use a cable tie and fasten them to a wire fence.
Step 8 Step eight
Now you just need to be patient and wait for the birds. Try different fruit to see which the birds like best. You could also fasten a pinecone covered in fat and birdseed to the nail for the birds to eat. Let us know how you get on with this project and remember to share it with your teacher at school or kindy. Imagine if a whole class made brightly coloured bird feeders to put up at your school!

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