Neighbors, Squirrels, and Birdseed from above

meawea(7a)July 13, 2014

I live on the bottom floor of an apartment building and I started growing things in containers this year. Only problem is that my new upstairs neighbor has two birdfeeders that are attracting super destructive squirrels. I had to completely scrap my containers that had lettuces and carrots earlier due to their placement directly under one birdfeeder and my squash are struggling- the squirrels constantly dig in the soil looking for tasty seeds that have fallen from above. Cayenne pepper worked briefly but then the soil got moldy under it.....? My space is already severely limited and my neighbor probably won't care that her feeders are killing my plants.
Most of my planters are too heavy to move right now and a move would put them in a place with more reflected heat and sun. I'm considering golf umbrellas to divert the seed fall but I don't want a talking to from management and I'm concerned with blocking sun... Any suggestions??

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DMForcier(8 DFW)

Talk to management. There are very effective squirrel-proof feeders. It won't stop the rain of seeds completely as birds do it too. But it will keep the squirrels foraging elsewhere.

As for the pepper, don't blame the squirrels. If the soil got moldy it was too dense and wet to begin with. Peppers won't tolerate wet feet for long.


    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 3:59PM
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Tbh, I think I put the cayenne powder on a little thick, after days of rain. (But I'll keep your advice in mind for my actual pepper plant.)
I guess I should start to look for some diy options to divert the fall of the seeds.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 4:35PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Have you talked to your neighbor? Why are people so hesitant to approach a neighbor about something like this? I'd talk with them in a friendly manner, explain what the squirrels are doing and that they could actually do damage to the building.

Tell them you appreciate them wanting to feed and watch birds, but that their feeders are attracting squirrels and other rodents to the apartment. I would NOT suggest a "squirrel proof " feeder, which won't solve your problem at all.

Tell them that birds need clean, fresh water more than they need birds seed (absolutely true) and that a little bird bath would attract a lot of birds for viewing (also true).

Perhaps they can consider a hummingbird feeder? Suggest that as a solution.

If you find them uncooperative to your FRIENDLY and NONCONFRONTATIONAL approach, then make a personal visit to management to tell them of the problem of the rodents (a better word than cute little squirrels). Mice and rats love bird seed, too, as do racoons. Emphasize the rodent problem, not that your plants are being damaged.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 4:55PM
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Rhizo_1, under normal circumstances, I would not hesitate to speak with her..... Except I already spoke to her about another, more pressing, issue that was keeping/waking me and my fiancee up at odd hours and was just generally disturbing at all other hours.

tl;dr: I don't want to become THAT neighbor and complain about everything my upstairs neighbor does. I just file these things under "motivation to move into a HOUSE".

I think this is something I *might* be able to fix, I just don't know how.....

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 5:21PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I see.....and sympathize. I hope that the situation is resolved for you.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 11:26PM
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another thing to consider is animal fecies from squirls and the birds, theese can harbor some life threating parasites. that would be my aproach, deffintly don't eat any raw or uncleaned veggies

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 6:43AM
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