Add Red Pepper To Your Bird Seed To Deter Squirrels

As an avid birdwatcher, I do not enjoy watching the abundant squirrels devour all my bird feed. Not many birds came even though I refilled the birdhouse countless times. Thankfully I once heard that squirrels HATE red pepper. I mixed about one Tbsp. of red pepper with my bird seed, and the pesky squirrels did not return. The birds are not bothered by the pepper, and it saves a lot of money on buying tons of birdseed, only to come to squirrels eating it.


By Esther from Baltimore, MD

January 24, 20080 found this helpful

I have a ? Do u mean cayene or crushed red pepper? This sounds like a good idea.

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January 24, 20080 found this helpful

I have this problem too and I'd also like to know what kind of red pepper.

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January 29, 20080 found this helpful


Do you mean the Bell Peppers? I am not sure what you call them- see picture.

My parents have alot of problems with squirrels and would love to know what type you mean.

Best wishes

Monique :)

Somerset, UK

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February 6, 20080 found this helpful

I've added crushed red pepper to my bird feed yesterday still waiting to see if it works. I have one or two varmits hanging around but my jack russell's try hard to keep them away.

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February 6, 20080 found this helpful

Do you mean the hot red pepper stuff or crushed up red bell peppers? I still don't know what kind of pepper they mean and would REALLY like to find out!


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February 15, 20080 found this helpful

I bought cayenne pepper at the grocery store and that works. I also put the feeder on a shepard hook away from the trees and house and greased the pole which provides a lot of fun watching the squirrels trying to get the food. You may also find cayenne pepper at some of the dollar stores. Good luck.

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April 3, 20080 found this helpful

Use cayenne pepper. My spice jar also says "crushed red pepper." Hope this works for you.

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August 4, 20080 found this helpful

Just add any powdered red pepper/cayenne pepper that you find in your local grocery store. Nothing fancy, doesn't need to be whole flakes. Just powder. That's all.

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September 21, 20080 found this helpful

I just found a site that said red pepper is fine but if it's in a powder form, a breeze can blow and get it in the birds eyes. This is not good for them, it's just like us getting it in our eyes.

Although they don't have the same receptors as mammals and they do not taste the heat in chili or cayenne pepper when they eat it.

All the sites I looked up talk about dried pepper you'd find in the spice section of the grocery store, not fresh peppers in produce section.

Also, you can buy just Safflower seed as opposed to mixed seed and squirrels don't like it. But it limits the birds that visit - Blue Jays like sunflower seeds, Woodpeckers like the nuts. You'll still get plenty of others though - sparrows, titmice, etc.

This is the site, there are a few others out there that give some good ideas to keep squirrels away...and to keep rats and mice from eating your seed off the ground. Ugh!

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November 15, 20080 found this helpful

I have been trying the powdered kind for several days now. No results yet, the little varmits continue to come back and there seems to be less birds. I may try mixing it up with the flakes, just to see what happens.

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April 29, 20090 found this helpful

How many pounds of birdseed do you use with 1T red pepper? My feeders hold 1 to 1-1/2 pounds, but the bags I bought are 6-8 pounds.

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