You only have to watch seconds of a David Attenborough documentary (other presenters are available, of course!) to know that nature can be absolutely breath-taking. And it’s easier than you might think to get yourself that little bit closer to nature, or rather, to bring nature that little bit closer to you. No matter where you live, you’ll almost certainly have a much larger bird population nearby than you realise.
More than simply getting the attention of pigeons, you can bring all manner of feathered wildlife into your area, no matter how big your home might be. Part of it is making sure you put the right kind of feed out to attract certain birds, but what do you need for that? A bird table. So, if a little extra wildlife in your garden sounds like a good thing, read on for the best bird tables you can buy right now.
|Bird Table||Height (cm)||Options|
|Perky-Pet Deluxe Bird Station||200||5|
|Kingfisher Feeding Station||190||5|
|Tom Chambers Bird Station||210||7|
|Home & Roost Hove Table||50||1|
|The Hutch Company Table||170||1|
|Elitezotec Hanging Table||190||5|
|The Hutch Company Maypole||125||1|
|Wildlife World Urban Feeder||16||1|
|Nature's Market Bird Table||152||1|
Product Quick Links
- 1. Perky Pet Deluxe Wild Bird Feeding Station
- 2. Kingfisher Bird Feeding Station
- 3. Tom Chambers Grand Bird Station
- 4. Home and Roost Hove Wall-Mounted Bird Table
- 5. The Hutch Company Ballycastle XL Bird Table
- 6. Elitezotec Traditional Hanging Bird Table
- 7. The Hutch Company Maypole Heavy-Duty Bird Table
- 8. Wildlife World Urban Bird Feeder
- 9. Nature’s Market Wooden Bird Table
- Which Bird Table to Go for?
- Bird Table Buying Guide
Perky Pet’s Deluxe bird feeder station is an understated, contemporary looking bird feeder that would be at home in any garden. It’s made out of an anti-glare black powder-coated weatherproof steel and comes in at a height of 2 metres. The height gives it plenty of room for lots of feeder space, but with a slim profile remains unobtrusive. It also comes with a number of different feeder options; a seed and nut feeder, a steel spiral for fat balls, three hanging hooks for feeders of your choice, a water bowl and a mesh feeding tray.
Installation and setup are quite easy – multiple segmented poles are inserted into each other, with wing nuts provided to place different feeder attachments wherever you prefer. A ground stake is on the end of the pole to insert the pole into the ground. A stabiliser is not provided with the package but would increase the pole’s stability.
This bird feeder station by Kingfisher is a black powder-coated weatherproof steel pole with a number of spaces for feeders and attachments. A water bowl and a metal food mesh tray are supplied and sit around mid-height, and there are three brackets for different hanging feeders such as seed/nut or fat ball dispensers.
Made of a rust and weatherproof powder-coated steel which comes in multiple segments, installation is a simple matter of inserting the poles into each other. It can then be stuck into the ground thanks to the ground spike. The water bowl and mesh food tray attach to the main pole via stylish and simple spirals that attach around the pole. While not included, a stabiliser might be a useful addition in high-wind areas.
The Grand Bird Station by brand Tom Chambers lives up to its name thanks to a heavy-duty yet ornate design. The main pole is made from tough 38mm diameter steel, giving it an extra bit of stability in harsh weather or when well-loaded with birds. Five hanging brackets, as well as a metal mesh feed tray and water bowl attachments, ensure that it’s likely to attract a large number of birds as well.
A powder coating to the pole gives it a good amount of weatherproofing, and assembly is a matter of inserting the poles into one another and using a two-pronged stabiliser foot to embed it firmly into the ground.
The wooden wall-mounted Hove bird feeder by gardening brand Home and Roost is a subtle and rustic table suited for smaller gardens or bird populations. With a felt-roofed miniature bird-house style platform, which is 255mm high and 260mm wide, on a backing plank which is 500mm high, it’s designed to neatly fit just about anywhere in the garden – you can attach it to the fence, the shed or even the wall.
The feeder is made from C24 graded timber, renowned as a more heavy-duty timber suitable to heavier loads and with a longer lifespan. Therefore, you can be sure that the large single tray can withstand plenty. The wood is treated with an anti-bacterial coating to assist in preventing any disease spreading, while the roof and cut-outs around the platform’s edging ensure water can runoff without collecting.
No matter how big the birds, you can be sure that the Ballycastle XL by The Hutch Company is up to the task. With a name that sounds like the name of one of The Queen’s holiday properties, it does have quite a fancy design. A hexagonal platform sits at the top, with a slanted roof to ensure water runs off and does not collect on the platform. It comes together very easily, thanks to a 3-part basic construction – the different parts simply slot together.
An anti-bacterial coating to the wood also helps with its hygiene. The Ballycastle XL is also a very stable bird feeder; the base of the table is a cross with buttresses onto the main pole, as well as 4 twist-out feet to maximise stability in high winds and other harsh weather conditions. It’s also made with sustainability in mind, with The Hutch Company promising to plant two trees for every one cut down.
Elitezotec’s Traditional hanging bird feeder is a simple and versatile pole-based feeding station. Featuring a water bowl, metal mesh food tray and three hanger brackets for adding any other feeders you want to, it’s plenty versatile enough for most gardens. Made from a powder-coated black steel pole, it comes in several segments which simply slot together for a very straightforward assembly.
The pole is slimline but tall, at around 1.9 metres, and would slot into most gardens without sticking out. It can be inserted into the ground via the ground spike, which is supplied, and thanks to the coating on the steel it is fairly robust and weatherproof. It may also benefit from a stabiliser (not included).
This toughly built bird table by The Hutch Company is a solid, no-nonsense table that performs very well. Built with sustainability in mind, the brand claims that it plants two trees for every one cut down for their tables, with all their timber sourced in the UK. The timber itself is treated with an anti-bacterial and anti-fungal coating, and water runoff is prevented by a slate-effect roof and cut-outs on the table’s edging.
Coming in at 1.25 metres tall, its solid design extends to the 4 feet in a cross shape, buttressed to the main pole for extra strength and stability. Coming in multiple segments, the different parts are easily slotted together and just need screwing in place.
Different varieties of birds are not just in the rural back of beyond! This urban bird feeder by Wildlife World is a minimalist and surprisingly stylish option for those wanting to attract feathered wildlife to their homes, even when living in the city. Made from a mixture of wood and recycled plastics, the feeder’s contemporary style is set off by the neutral tone of the outer body. The shape is also simple and effective, giving you the option to wall-mount it as a square or diamond.
Wildlife World use a ‘Clayplas+’ plastic compound which is 70% clay and 30% recycled plastic, offering a 10-year guarantee on the material’s durability. Actually coming in two segments, the inner part can simply be slid out for cleaning and topping up with feed, with the whole unit a self-contained shelter and feeding station for smaller birds.
This simple and elegant bird table from Nature’s Market is a traditional-looking and functional bird feeder table. Made from FSC-certified wood with a stain treatment that not only gives it a sophisticated, rustic look but also gives in an extra degree of protection, it’s also scalloped around the roof edges for some subtle style, making it a decorative piece as much as a functional one. The roof itself is slate effect and overhangs the platform to ensure no water can collect on the table.
It’s solidly built, with edging around the table platform to make sure seed won’t fall off. There are two small cut-outs in this edging as well, to give birds easier access as well as helping any water that does collect to drain away. It’s held up by 4 reinforced legs, arranged in a pyramidal shape for good stability.
Which Bird Table to Go for?
Best quality & features – The Hutch Company’s Ballycastle XL Bird Table has the best combination of quality and features for it to be our top-rated feeder. Grand and stylish, almost a mini-palace for your garden birds, it counts on robust construction and well-designed stable feet to keep it upright – twist-out feet are also built-in for extra stability in high winds. The feeding table platform is large with a hexagonal shape, to encourage lots of birds at once, and has an ideal selection of safety and hygiene features; anti-bacterial coating and a roof/platform design to encourage water to run off. The company’s commitment to re-planting trees is also a ecologically-friendly bonus.
On a budget – The Kingfisher Bird Feeding Station is the ideal choice for those wanting to get the most out of a limited budget. With 5 different options for feeding stations, with a water bowl, metal mesh food tray and three hooks for hanging feeders, it’s gives you and your birds plenty of options. Powder-coated steel also lends this a good degree of durability and weatherproofing, ensuring you’ll get plenty of life out of it.
The best for urban gardens – Wildlife World’s Urban Bird Feeder should be the number one choice for those who, despite living in urban areas, still want to encourage birds. While plenty of city accommodation doesn’t have the luxury of a yard or garden, the very low profile of Wildlife World’s feeder and its wall-mounted designed mean that you can make the most of wall space and still offer something to bird populations. While it is small, you could easily buy more than one and encourage return visitors.
Most sustainable – Nature’s Market traditionally-styled Wooden Bird Table get top marks for sustainability in their bird table, thanks to the UK Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification of the timber used in its construction. This certification assures that companies have a proven commitment to the environment and responsible management of forests and allows for tracing of timber back to its source. Honourable mentions go out to The Hutch Company’s Ballycastle XL and Maypole for the brands tree-planting promise.
For lots of birds – Tom Chambers’ Grand Bird Station, complete with its seven different options for bird feeders, is the obvious choice for gardens that want to attract, or already attract, lots of birds. Aside from a generously sized water bowl and metal mesh food tray, you have a lot of options to customise what’s hanging from the feeder. Four large hooks at the very top of the pole will take care of any larger feeders, with another slightly smaller hook situated a little further down.
Bird Table Buying Guide
It’s a wonderful thing to look out of the window and see birds flocking to your garden. With a good quality table, well-stocked with the right kinds of food, you can encourage more and more visitors. There is even a charitable reason to do so, beyond your own personal satisfaction; when done right, a bird table can help maintain bird populations by giving them access to food in harsher conditions. Take cold, miserable British winters for example. Frozen ground is hardly conducive to birds getting to their food source, so a bird table does them a huge favour.
But enough on why it’s a good idea to get a bird table – it’s also vital to know just what to look for to make sure you get the best possible table, both for your local bird population and for your garden. That’s what our buying guide is here to clear up for you.
The majority of bird tables sold nowadays are wooden, but an ever-increasing variety of metal, plastic and polycarbonate tables and feeding trays have entered the market in recent years. The trade-off is that these will usually look a little less natural, but with the advantage that they are easier to keep clean. That said, wood tables can still last a long time when treated with the right aftercare products. There is also the consideration of wood quality and source – in the UK, look for FSC-certified wood to be sure that the wood has been sourced to the highest ecological and sustainable standards.
Sure, you want something that fits the space you have, but size here concerns the birds as much as it concerns you (if not more so!). The long and short of it is that a smaller table encourages in-fighting between birds over what may appear to be a limited supply of food. With that in mind, a little research beforehand on the local bird species you might be attracting to your table, and knowing how big they are, will help you make the right choice about how big a table surface to purchase.
As any cat owner will know, birds are often the target of a peckish feline. By equal measure, the food left out can also be sniffed out by rodents such as squirrels. Therefore, it’s important that you make sure that the only creatures who can access your bird table are the birds themselves. For wall-mounted feeders, position them somewhere without any nearby platforms for wily creatures to jump across from, and with tables atop posts, the smoother, the better. This will discourage anything from attempting to climb up the table and get at either the food or the unwitting birds.
It should go without saying but double-checking any bird table you get for sharp edges or other potential hazards to your feathered friends is of the utmost importance. With that in in mind, keep an eye out for protruding nails, splinters or any other sharp bits. If you live in an area with notable predatory birds, then a roof to the bird table is essential, lest a hawk pops down for a snack at your table. A roof also has the secondary benefit of offering rain protection, which would put the food at risk of going mouldy.
That concludes everything you need to know before you set about buying a bird table. Whether you live in an urban sprawl or the middle of nowhere, there’s a bird table/feeder out there that’s perfect for your situation. With it, you can bring more wildlife into your life, and give a little back to nature at the same time.
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