Squirrels are almost always greedy and aggressive – they chase everyone else away. They run like heck when the deer show up, even though the deer just ignore them. So they are often frustrating, and I’m always trying to figure out ways to stop them from eating everything.
For instance, I now put safflower seed into the long feeder, because it tastes bitter to the squirrels – and birds love it! These are fat squirrels I’m talking about! So I also use hot pepper suet – the squirrels taste and feel the hot pepper – the birds do not. And for woodpeckers, like the flickers and the downies, suet is very important.
They find ways around the squirrel baffles, take down and drag off the suet feeders, and are very creative. But they go to bed earlier and get up later than many birds, especially the cardinals. So I try to put the no-mess mix out after the squirrels have drifted off in the evening, and before they rise in the morning. This means the blue jays miss out, but most of the birds get fed.
I’m happy to feed the squirrels – but not to feed them everything!