Nature Journaling #46: Make a Bird Feeder

Nature journals are a fun way to pass the time. To many Great Parks nature interpreters, they are a tool that fosters meaningful connections with the natural world.

Want to create a nature journal with your child? Grab some paper and a pencil, step out the front door and use the prompt below. We’ll publish a new prompt daily, so be sure to check back here for more!

A red-bellied woodpecker sits on a bird feeder.
Your feeder will look different than one you can buy from a store, but birds will still love it!

Today’s Prompt: Make a Bird Feeder

Make a simple bird feeder. You will need:

  • An empty gallon or half gallon jug that still has the lid. Be sure to clean it out!
  • A pen or marker
  • Scissors
  • Bird seed


  • On two sides of the jug, draw a circle that is about 4 inches wide, leaving a space between the bottom of the circle and the bottom of the jug that is about 2 inches.
  • Cut out the circles (you may need an adult’s help with this). These circles will be how the birds get into the jug to get the seed. 
  • Fill the bottom of the jug with bird seed – oil sunflower or safflower are good choices.
  • Make sure the lid is on. This will keep rain from getting inside and ruining the seed!
  • Go outside and hang the jug up in a tree or secure it onto a fence post by the handle. If you need it, get some rope or twine to hang your bird feeder.
  • Step away. From a distance, watch and see how long it takes the birds to find your bird feeder.

What kinds of birds came to your feeder first? Keep track of how many different kinds come to your feeder.

A Few Tips for Success:

  • Work with your child’s attention span. If they aren’t enjoying an activity, allow them to choose a new one. If they are highly focused, give them plenty of time to continue the observations.
  • Allow creativity. Children often have interests that go beyond the questions we pose. Create a safe environment so they can create and explore on their terms.
  • Journal along with your child. You never know what you may discover and it’s a great way to spend some quality time together.
  • Try activities at different times of day. Observations may change with time and temperature.

Want to try your hand at different nature journaling topics? Click here for more prompts.

Amy Roell
Director of Education & Events