The Bottom Line
Hopper feeders are a staple in thousands of bird-friendly backyards, but each year backyard birders endure broken, worn out wooden feeders, warped plastic and the accumulation of oil, seed hulls and other debris that could harbor bacteria and disease. The Eco-Strong Songbird Hopper Feeder from Duncraft changes all of that – its durable recycled plastic is easy to clean and lasts years longer than basic feeders. The classic, traditional design, however, is appealing to both birds and birders, and this feeder is an attractive, valuable and worthwhile addition to any backyard feeding station.
- Attractive, classic design with natural tone colors suitable for all gardens and backyards.
- Moderate capacity is suitable for even busy backyards (larger size also available).
- Eco-friendly recycled plastic materials are more durable and hygienic than basic wood feeders or thinner plastic composites.
- Hanging wire length prohibits fully removing the roof for refilling and may hinder larger scoops.
- Slick surface may initially be difficult for birds to perch on the feeder, particularly when wet, but slightly roughening the surface with sandpaper can eliminate the problem.
- Name: Eco-Strong Songbird Hopper Feeder (Item 4083)
- Manufacturer: Duncraft
- Feeder Type: Seeds or birdseed mixes
- Height: 9.75" (24.8 cm) – not including hanging wire
- Width: 7.0" (17.8 cm) x 9.5" (24.1 cm)
- Capacity: Approximately 2-3 pounds (.9-1.4 kg) depending on seed type
- Construction: Recycled plastic
- Price: $59.95 (via Duncraft; prices from other retailers may vary)
Review - Eco-Strong Songbird Hopper
Birders and birds alike get used to the same feeders when they are used year after year, and it can be disappointing when a favorite wooden hopper feeder cracks after the wood dries out and is subjected to seasonal stresses. The Eco-Strong Songbird Hopper Feeder from Duncraft has the look of a classic wooden hopper feeder but is constructed from thick, durable, recycled plastic that won't warp or discolor. The non-porous material is more sanitary, easier to clean and resists squirrel damage as well.
The feeder's tan sides and forest green roof are well suited for display in any garden, and a simple wood grain texture on the roof is attractive and reminiscent of classic wooden feeders. The entire roof lifts off for cleaning and refilling, and the clear side panels can both be removed for cleaning. Wide openings at the base of the side panels release seed easily, including birdseed mixes and larger seeds such as black oil sunflower seeds or striped sunflower seeds. A half inch lip on the sides of the feeder provides a perch for feeding birds and helps hold seed securely, though gaps at the ends of the feeder can allow seed to spill, especially if tipped.
The roof of the feeder is securely joined with the two sides making a right angle rather than being mitered to join at the top. This construction prevents any rain leakage at the top of the feeder, and the holes for the hanging wire are outside the width of the seed reservoir to ensure the seed stays dry. The gap between the roof and the clear side panels is also well overhung and small enough to minimize any moisture or insect intrusion that might cause seed to spoil.
A sturdy coated hanging wire is securely fastened to the sides of the feeder with screws, and it feeds through small holes in the roof for straight, even hanging that also keeps the roof secure from accidentally opening. The wire is relatively short to minimize twisting, though the feeder's weight will also keep it steadier if hung in a windy area. The wire loop can easily be hung from any size hook as well as small branches.
Though a basic and familiar design, the Eco-Strong Songbird Hopper Feeder from Duncraft is meticulously designed for both durability and functionality. Its classic look will appeal to all backyard birders and it is equally appealing for birds that are used to wooden feeders. In fact, backyard birders may find that it is so appealing to the birds that they will need to upgrade to the Super Songbird Hopper and its greater capacity, just to keep up with the demands of their hungry backyard guests.