How to Make a DIY Bird Feeder From Recycled Materials

Attract birds to your yard with a project that's fun for kids of all ages.

With this DIY bird feeder, you can welcome more birds into your backyard by repurposing empty milk cartons. This quick and easy project is especially fun for kids and parents or grandparents to do together. Just choose a paint color and glue on whatever craft or natural materials fit your vision. The end result will be a charming yard decoration that provides a good food source for your avian visitors.


Adult supervision required

  • 1 milk or juice carton
  • Rope, cord, ribbon, or wire
  • Acrylic paint
  • Paint brushes
  • Decorations recycled from household materials, crafts, or nature
  • Craft or hot glue


1. Cut a large hole in the center of one side of the carton, starting several inches from the bottom.

2. Beneath this large hole, cut a small hole to poke a stick through. This will provide a perch for dining birds.

3. Cut two small holes on either side of the top of the carton to thread the rope or wire through.

4. Paint and decorate your feeder. Want to make your backyard birds a cottage? An apartment building? Use your imagination!

5. Fill with birdseed. (Learn more about what types of seed attract different birds in the Audubon Guide to Birdseed.)

6. Hang your feeder in a spot about five feet from the ground, preferably with a good view from your window.