Pet birds add interest and joy to our homes. Unfortunately, they bring with them a large and consistent mess. Birds eat a diet of seeds and pellets, and while eating often tend to toss the seeds about, climb into the food cups or fling seeds from their beaks. In turn, the seeds wind up on the floor of the surrounding cage areas. Bird seed catchers purchased in pet stores keep the mess down, but can be expensive. You can create your own bird seed catcher tailor-made for your bird's cage at a fraction of the cost with everyday materials.
Fold your fabric square into fourths, making a smaller, folded square. Fold the fabric over one more time, until the square becomes a triangle.
Cut the wide end of the triangle into a curved shape. Unfold the fabric and it will be shaped like a circle. Trim the circle to meet your bird cage's needs, making sure the finished circle is 12 inches wider than your cage.
Fold the outer edge of the fabric over a half inch. Use stick pins to hold the folded fabric in place. Hem the edge of the fabric to the place it is folded to create a fabric tube for the wire frame of your bird seed catcher. Remove the pins as you hem the area they are holding.
Bend the corner of your wire over, pinching it to secure it with pliers. Slip the bent end into the fabric tube, carefully working the wire all the way through the fabric until you reach the point you started from. Once the bent end of the wire touches the other end, twist, clip the wire free from the spool and twist the ends together.
Adjust the wire inside the fabric until the entire structure, both fabric and wire, makes a circle shape.
Place the bird cage into the centre of the fabric circle. Poke one hole into the fabric near the areas where the corners of the bird cage sit. When you have finished you should have four holes.
Thread a ribbon through the hole in the fabric, tying it to secure it to the structure. Repeat this with each hole. Then securely tie the other end of the ribbon to each corner of the bird cage.
Hang the cage up again to use your new bird seed catcher.
Measure the distance all the way around your bird cage. Add 4 inches to this measurement. This is the measurement used to cut the length of your fabric. The width of the fabric should be anywhere from 6 to 10 inches, depending on how high you wish the skirt to go on your cage. If your bird is very messy or is a large species of bird, use the larger estimate, possibly increasing it to 12 inches. Once you choose a width, add 1 inch to that measurement.
Cut the fabric into a rectangle shape using the measurements you recorded.
Fold the fabric over by a half inch all the way around, securing it with stick pins. Hem the fabric (sew the folded edges so that they are attached to the fabric), removing the pins as you sew.
Place one end of an adhesive Velcro strip to the outside of one end of the fabric rectangle, and place the other end of the strip to the inside of the other end of the fabric rectangle. Wrap the fabric around the cage at the food cup line and secure the Velcro strips together so it stays in place.
Place a large plastic mat similar to those used for wheeled desk chairs beneath the bird cage, letting the cage structure rest atop the mat. This is an added means of protection to keep feathers, seeds and pellets off of your floor.
Tips and warnings
- Place a large plastic mat similar to those used for wheeled desk chairs beneath the bird cage, letting the cage structure rest atop the mat. This is an added means of protection to keep feathers, seeds and pellets off of your floor.
Things you need
- Fabric, 1 to 2 yards depending on size of cage
- Ruler or measuring tape
- Stick pins
- Needle and thread or sewing machine
- Spool of strong flexible wire
- Adhesive Velcro strips