Design & DIY

A bait-and-slip tactic


Fishing is for the birds at Glenn Armstrong’s Julian Lake place in the Kawarthas, thanks to a surplus rod that feeds chickadees and thwarts freeloading black squirrels and chipmunks. “I was trying to come up with a way to keep squirrels from getting at the feeder,” says Armstrong. A tent pole didn’t work, so Armstrong screwed a block of white birch to the deck railing and drilled a 1″ hole into it to hold the butt end of a fishing rod. Then, he jammed a 5′ rod (he says stiffer is better) into the mount and tied the feeder to its tip. Now the furry-tailed gymnasts offer more entertainment than the birds. “They try running up the rod, but they can’t get past the handle. They can’t hang on, since it gets smaller as it goes out,” says Armstrong. “A few try to jump off the railing and land on the feeder, but they fall off. Suckers.”