Something is Wrong With My Squirrel Buster Plus Feeder

We've had a SquirrelBuster Plus tube feeder for a number of years.  Nat bought it for me for my birthday sometime in the past five or six years.  And for the most part, I have loved the feeder.  With our current setup, I've mostly been using a small mix of seed including thistle seeds in this feeder because we've had larger, seed and nut-based mixes in our fly-through feeder.  The song birds seem to hanging out at the fly-through mostly.  The peckers and nut thatches spend their time on the suet cages.  And the little finches and sparrows and others seem to be using the tube feeder.   Here's a post from here on the blog showing an American Goldfinch perched on the feeder outside our kitchen windows.  It was working just fine back then. 

But recently, I've noticed that the SquirrelBuster is emptying really rapidly.  In about a day.  And I'm assuming that a squirrel is getting to it and shaking.  For most of its life, this feeder served it's name:  it busted curious squirrels.  But today?  It is leaking like a sieve. 

Something is not right with it and you can tell based on filling it.  I set the SquirrelBuster Plus on our stoop and began to dump seed into it.  When you lift the feeder up, it leaves this pattern:

The Squirrel Buster Plus hanging feeder can be bought at Amazon for $95.  Yeah....$95 for a bird feeder.  Premium price.  But, see why it is a premium product from a company that provides premium service.

The folks at Brome Bird Care - who make the SquirrelBuster feeders - have a strong warranty on their feeders.  In fact, they offer a "lifetime care warranty" on their site.  Basically...anything that's wrong with feeder, they'll fix!  Here's how they bill it on their site:

See that bit about 'lose a part'?  Yeah, they will ship you parts.  Even if you lose something (like I have with the 'ring' that goes around the feeder and some of the perches), they'll make you whole. 

Now that's a good company and someone who justifies their premium prices. 

I reached out to them and inquired about the feeder.  They responded immediately and wanted to make things right.  The staff at Brome offered a few ideas and basically said:  don't worry....we'll get to the bottom of this and figure out how to make it right.  After failing to be able to troubleshoot the feeder via email - mostly, I suspect due to my inability to properly describe the situation to the customer service staffer, I decided to make this video (below) that shows what is happening.

This video shows the process of filling the feeder and hanging it.  Then, I jiggle the whole thing.  Seed is coming out of the feeding holes, but a few things to note:  at the 30 second mark, you can see the seed pattern that came out of the bottom of the feeder and at the 56 second mark, look at the ground to see ALL OF THE SEED ON THE GROUND.

Seed is clearly coming out of the bottom, right? the 51 second mark, when I turn the camera to underneath the feeder, just shaking the feeder causes seed to drop out the bottom.

I posted this video to YouTube and shared the link to the team at Brome Bird Care.  When they respond back, I'll post an update.  Based on their initial response, they're total pros and want to figure out what the problem is with the feeder.  Either through new parts or helping me tighten up something, I'm certain we'll get it figured out. 


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