RSPB > Bird care > Bird feeders > Ground feeders

    Folding cage guardian to protect ground-feeding birds from predators, creating a safe haven for them to feed. The narrow mesh will exclude larger garden birds and most adult squirrels.

    Made from powder-coated steel, the ground protector comes with pegs to secure it to the ground and there's room inside for an RSPB ground feeding table (not included). The top opens easily for cleaning and refilling.



    Type of bird
    • Blue tit
    • Dunnock
    • Great tit
    • House sparrow
    • Long-tailed tit
    • Robin
    • Wren


    Specification
    Width 52 cm Depth 52 cm Height 43 cm
    • Type of Feeder
      Bird feeder accessories
      Squirrel resistant feeders
      Table

    Standard delivery to the UK and Channel Islands is £3.95.
    You'll only ever pay one delivery charge per order.

    Delivery is FREE if your order sub-total is £75 or more.
    Delivery is FREE if you order only Pressies that protect, RSPB gift cards and/or RSPB gift membership.

    Next working day delivery is available for in-stock items ordered before 3pm to UK addresses - £5.95
    Choose the day delivery is available for in-stock items to UK addresses - £5.95
    (Items that can be personalised and products sent direct from the supplier are not available for next day or choose the day delivery. Some postcodes are also excluded.)

    See our delivery and returns page for full details.

    This ground protector guardian has narrow mesh openings (4 x 6 cm gaps) which will restrict larger garden birds, such as blackbirds, thrushes, doves and pigeons and most adult squirrels. Small and juvenile squirrels and starlings may still be able to access the bird food.

    If you wish to prevent all but small garden birds from accessing your bird food, our adjustable ground sanctuary is a great choice, as you can set the mesh size to suit.

    If you have hedgehogs in your garden please consider removing the ground protector at night, or lifting it off the ground at one edge. It's very unlikely, but possible that they may try to get inside and get stuck.

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    Average Customer Reviews

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    We'd like your opinion! Rate and review this item

    06/Nov/2017
    Birds like it
    This is a very recent purchase and the birds like it although the blackbirds are not yet 'risking' it.
    I did wonder if the blackbird was perhaps too large as he is wondering around but not going in. However I now know that he could get in as I have developed a problem with rats who are going in in broad daylight and as a result I have had to stop using it temporarily whilst I get rid of the rats. As I bought the small mesh one I thought such a thing would be kept out, the squirrel is unable to get in (though he hasn't tried)
    I do have a question on the use of rat poison blocks, if I put any close to where I feed the birds are the birds likely to eat the poison?
    I am currently putting bait blocks underneath the shed which is a 'run' but if I use this feeder they are likely to return to feed from it keeping the birds away. Advice on this would be welcome.

    RSPB response: Thank you for your review, its great to hear your birds are happily feeding inside the protector. With regards to rat poison, we do not recommend using this method for rodent control, as birds may be poisoned by either eating the block or secondary poisoning. Scavenging birds such as the red kite are particularly at risk, as they may pick up poisoned rats. Birds from reintroduction projects across the UK have died because of ingesting poisoned rodents. For more information on recommended methods, please follow this link https://ww2.rspb.org.uk/our-work/conservation/conservation-and-sustainability/farming/advice/techniques-to-help-wildlife/rodenticide-use/
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    10/Aug/2016
    Early days, but so far impressed!
    Was rather dubious that this would work as have many larger birds, squirrels and cats that visit our garden .... half expected our first visitor to be a squirrel after reading some of the reviews. Was very pleased to see that the first visitor was our resident robin who never seems to get any of the foot put down thanks to the squirrels, pigeons, magpies, jackdaws and crows!
    Would definitely recommend. Bought together with a ground feeder - one pleased customer : )
    Early days, but looking forward to watching many of the smaller birds enjoy this safe haven.
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    13/Jul/2016
    Good value, weatherproof bird feeding cage
    I bought this cage a year ago. At first I noticed that the blackbirds wouldn't use it but a year on it's attracting a large range of small birds from sparrows and finches to blackbirds and thrushes. I moved here last year and there are a large number of starlings who nest in the roof spaces of all of the houses every Spring. I'm surprised how many reviewers dislike them. I love all birds and find that after breeding is over the Starlings feed in the cage no more than any other birds. The cage was to prevent Seagulls and crows taking everything quickly and this cage works perfectly. Seagulls and crows put their heads through the bars and pinch what's attainable so I would like a bigger cage to prevent this happening, however the one I have serves a good purpose and keeps goodies at the centre for the sole enjoyment of the smaller ground feeders. Mine is very durable, no rust or weather damage after a year. Don't mind paying a bit extra if it's from RSPB - happy customer.
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    08/Jul/2015
    Squirrels!
    This product does keep out the larger birds, although they can reach any food that is not centrally located. However, today I found a fully grown squirrel INSIDE scoffing all the food in a very short time. I could not understand how he had got in. His large tail was hanging outside, through the mesh. I went outside to investigate and he simply slid quickly through one of the holes and off he went. They must be mostly fir with small bodies, as he looked quite large.

    Now I cannot put any food out for our small birds as he will clear the tray in a flash!

    RSPB response: Thank you for your review. The narrow mesh guard does prevent most adult squirrels from, entering, although as stated juvenile or small adults may be able to squeeze through, particularly at this time of year. If the gaps were made any smaller then even the smaller garden birds would not be able to feed.
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    12/May/2015
    dissapointed
    Having recently bought one of these so as to let the two robins and sparrows, plus a few blue tits in our garden have a chance to feed rather than let the large number of starlings eat it all in a few minutes, I was sad to see that in no time at all the starlings were zooming in and out of it with no trouble at all and eating all the food in a short time, despite having lots of other food available elsewhere in the garden, so the robins and the blue tits are still going without getting any, and sitting on the fence watching the greedy starlings eat it all, the only birds that this ground protector keeps out are magpies, crows, pigeons, and doves, so its useless for what I wanted it for, but worse still is that's they're not cheap to buy either, so why doesn't RSPB design one with smaller holes thus restricting starling sized birds ?

    RSPB response:
    Thank you for your review. We do not claim that this feeder will stop starlings from feeding. It is almost impossible to create a mesh protector that is small enough to stop starlings, but still lets in all the other small garden birds. Starlings are not much larger than other garden birds, and are more willing to squeeze in to tighter spaces. Being a red listed species of particular concern we will not market a feeder to stop starlings completely, even if it were possible.
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    10/May/2015
    no match for squirrels
    I don't mind feeding any birds except jumbo-jet wood pigeons perhaps but they can't get into this cage - however I have a huge problems with grey squirrels - which is why I bought this - they just squeeze inside with no problems at all - I am spending a fortune on feeding squirrels with birdseed. I do get wild birds of all types when the squirrels allow them in. If I chase away squirrels that frightens the birds too. What should I do? This was quite expensive but it is no match for squirrels.
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    06/Dec/2014
    Does what I wanted it to do - keeps out pigeons, doves, magpies and lets the smaller birds eat in peace.
    I use the cage with a ground feeder tray and always sprinkle some seed near the edge of the tray - just to allow the the daft pigeons to reach some! Smaller birds are able to eat their fill without being frightened off.
    Definitely a hit in my garden.
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    30/Nov/2014
    waste of money
    Poor construction of joining pieces- mesh that starlings hop through like its not there. Silly dog lead type clip that rusts within 24 hours.
    Complete waste of money.

    RSPB response - If you would like to arrange a replacement or refund please contact our Customer Services Team.
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    10/Oct/2014
    Wasteful use of metal. Not big enough.
    Unless you put the food on the ground in a very small pile bang in the middle the pigeons magpies and jackdaws can reach through and eat the food. Soon they spread it around which makes it easier to reach.
    If the unit was circular and incorported the lid ths has the effect of increasing the distance from the perimeter to the food by a massive 6 inches. I have no giraffe necked magpies in my garden. Simply replace the lid with a bit of 10mm nylon garden mesh. Trust me. I have done this by slightly bending each panel and that is how I now use it without needing any more metal so it could be manufactured at the same price. Yet another case of a product designed by people who don't use it. The world is full of these products.
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    03/Sep/2014
    It does what it says on the packet
    This is a very well designed piece of kit. We have two joined together for an unusual reason - the hens could stretch far enough in to eat the food. The main reason for getting this was to stop the crows, and it's done that. We have several families of blackbirds feeding here regularly, and lining up on the wall to get to the food. We also get thrushes. The green finches, linnets, sparrows, dunnocks, wrens and a Robin use it daily. Perhaps you could design a double size one for those of us stupid enough to truly let our hens be free range!
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    20/Jun/2014
    not up to the job too pricey as well
    I had hoped to keep the bullys OUT and let the smaller birds that seem less in number in my garden get a chance to feed. Starlings are costing me a fortune the Robins and Tits don't get a look in!
    If we have to lose so much to the bullys i will consider giving up my membership.....then I will have some spare for a little more bird food.
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    07/Jun/2014
    birds love it
    Now feeding a greater variety of birds with this ground feeder than my bird table. Keeps the pidgeons and squirrels out which was the main reason for purchase. Food does get messy in the rain.
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    07/May/2014
    not narrow enough
    As so many others have said, it will keep out pigeons and doves but not squirrels and starlings. I acknowledge the RSPB comments about the endangered starling but that shows no understanding of the sheer quantity of food that a bunch of starlings will get through. They always bully the other birds so eat a majority of the food.
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    27/Mar/2014
    great
    this is great I feed the the bird's big or small .You cant pick the size of bird to feed if you love wild life . tommy
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    30/Jan/2014
    Not what I hoped for
    I bought this with a view to restricting feeding to smaller birds. Unfortunately, Blackbirds and Starlings slip through the mesh with no trouble.
    As I imagine the reason most of us buy one of these is to keep out the bigger birds, could you not provide one that would keep the above birds out.
    I know you have the adjustable one but that is a clumsy looking thing.

    RSPB response - Thanks for your review. Starlings have suffered a huge decline in recent years and are a red listed species. We would always encourage people to feed starlings if they visit your garden.
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    13/Jun/2013
    Good, but with starlings
    I stapled this cage to a wooden decking tile from Homebase, turned it upside down and mounted it on a 7ft post, which gives me a waterproof cage to hang feeders from, which parakeets etc. cannot get into and cats cannt reach. The feeders also stay dry. I modifed the anti-squirrel funnel pole attachment and no squirrels have got to it.

    My only criticism is that starlings can get in easily, so I would have liked a smaller mesh.
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    17/Apr/2013
    Definitely not squirrel proof :(
    After purchasing the very successful pitched roof guardian, we needed another flat roof one for another ground feeder but very disappointed that the mesh was much wider than the pitched roof mesh variety, despite it being described as small mesh and the squirrel had no trouble at all getting in without even having to squeeze through the mesh :( Just not up to the job this time so cannot recommend it if you want to keep squirrels or larger birds out.

    Thanks for your review. If you'd like a replacement or refund, please contact our Customer Services Team.
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    28/Jun/2012
    Mesh a bit too open
    This is a well made product and should last a long time. The problem I have with it is the mesh is a bit too open so that crows and jackdaws can get their heads in to peck at food (just their heads) and this scares the little birds away. As another reviewer said, starlings can get in easily but they are less of a problem where I live. All the squirrels can get in. Another issue was when it rained the food got wet and went mushy (not a fault of the mesh itself, just because it is completely open). I ended up doing a lot of modification to it. I fitted a roof to it and formed a side door. I also use a small 40mm deep tray for the food (set back from the mesh to stop the crows getting at it and to stop the wind carrying food out which was encouraging the crows also). I have also mounted it on a raised platform like a conventional bird-table as ground feeding was attracting rats. All-in-all I have had to modify it extensively to improve it but the problem regarding the size of the mesh is still there .... sorry this is not more positive but I'd rather just be honest ...
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    07/Jun/2012
    I'm sad. It doesn't do what I wanted.
    My reason for choosing the narrow mesh protector was to keep the starlings out of the nibbles I put out for the smaller birds. They come and eat everything in a matter of minutes. The robins and tits never get a look in. Unfortunately, most of the starlings have no problem slipping through the mesh.
    If you don't mind feeding the starlings, it's a great product. But as the guide doesn't list starlings as a species that will fit through, I'm really disappointed.

    RSPB response - We're sorry you're not happy with this product. If you'd like to return it for a refund or replacement, please contact Customer Services on 0845 1 200 501. We do state in the 'Advice' section of the product description that juvenile squirrels and starlings may still be able to get into this guardian.
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