Types of Bird Table
A traditional bird table is usually a nesting box or feeder fixed on top of a tall wooden column that stands on its own thanks to a wide, supportive base. These are the most popular and best selling kind of bird table as they can act as a statement in your garden and even become something of an ornate centrepiece!
Usually coming with a kind of supporting fixture or bracket, this kind of bird table is like a birdhouse, except it’s more open design essentially makes it a kind of feeder. These can usually only accommodate smaller birds and because they are often fitted to fences, they tend to make nice accents or extras to your garden, as they’re always going to be somewhat out of the way.
For people who can’t be fussed with fixtures or putting parts together, these are very much the same as a wall-mounted bird table, providing just the nest-box like structure. They can then be easily hung up in the garden on a supportive tree branch, fence post or other, giving you plenty of versatility on where you place your table.
Things To Consider
It’s very rare that a bird table is not made from wood, as these naturally have a nicer aesthetic than say a metal structure and are also naturally more comfy for birds. However not all woods are made equal and it can often be a good thing to check the type of wood and it’s density. For example, heavy duty woods like timber are going to be more durable and resistant to strong winds!
If you care about the environment, you might also want to choose an option that’s FSC certified or made of wood from a sustainable forest!
Too many people glaze over this important feature of a table, as without sufficient space to house multiple birds, you can end up with serious squabbling as certain birds look to rule the roost – and eat all the food! Check the dimensions to ensure your space is large enough to cater for all different kinds of birds, with 50 – 60 cm of width usually being the most satisfactory.
However, if you’re only interested in attracting smaller birds, a smaller table will do just fine!
Height & Post Style
The height and smoothness of a bird table’s stand can actually be very beneficial for bird safety as this can prevent animals like cats and squirrels from climbing up the pole themselves. And while squirrels usually just want to eat your seeds, we all know what those awfully cunning cats are up to!
Although wood is definitely a material which blends in well with your garden, it’s not always so durable if it has not been given the correct treatments. The most important type of treatment is a weather-resistant coating which will help protect the wood from soaking up water and becoming damp or rotted over time. Some bird table brands also offer coatings of antibacterial solutions like marcide. These help prevent the wood from becoming infected with funguses or diseases which could then be passed on to birds and make them ill!
Although weather-resistant coatings are great, nothing helps prevent the table getting drenched like a good quality roof! These days, many bird tables come with a roof made of a material like slate or asphalt which protect the wood from getting a serious soaking, as well as offer a nice retreat from the wet for a bird or two.
Putting together furniture can be a real pain in the neck sometimes and a bird table with an accompanying stand always sounds like it’s going to take a lot of DIY work.
Thankfully though, this isn’t the case more often than not and many bird tables come delivered pre-assembled, merely needing you to fix the nest box to its stand or wall mount.
Bird tables are a very obvious and noticeable piece of furniture in your garden and so picking something which matches your lot layout or that suits your personal taste is always going to be fairly high up on your list of priorities. Look out for unusual stand base designs, roof patterns, colours and decorative finials to help you make your decision!
Bird tables can be mighty expensive, with certain styles and brands charging up to £150 for a high-quality timber table!
However, they are plenty of cheaper options out there which are still aesthetically pleasing and sturdy models that will do the job just as well. In general, a top of the range designer table will cost you around £100, whereas standard tables tend to go for around £30 to £60.