Bird feeders are a clever way to bring beautiful and colorful wings into your yard. You can set up a bird cam and enjoy the view even when you’re at the office. And if you’re working from home or spending a lazy afternoon, you can set up a cozy chair where you can see the birds nibbling their goodies. But you know what else attracts birds to your yard? Baths.
As the months get warmer, wild birds will love splashing around in your DIY bird bath. And it serves squirrels and raccoons too if you like that kind of visitor. Bird baths are functional items, but they can be aesthetic too. So they add to your home’s visual (and property) value. Plus it’s a fun DIY project. Look through this list and see if anything sparks your interest.
1. Use Plastic Planters
The idea is simple. Buy several planter pots and sauces, stack them into the shape you want, then glue them together securely. The sections that will hold water have to be waterproof. That’s why glue is preferred to nails or screws. You can paint the pots in pretty flower-like colors to attract more birds. And be sure it stands stable on the ground to avoid accidents.
2. Topsy-Turvy Bird Bath
Planter pots are a good shortcut to DIY bird baths. But keep them bottom-heavy so they don’t tip while the birds are drinking or splashing. This version uses off-kilter terracotta pots with a bird basin on top. The pots have flowers in them so any water that spills will nourish the plants. Use a central rebar to hold the pots in place and create that off-center effect.
3. Home & Family DIY Bird Bath
You don’t need expensive store-bought pieces to make a DIY bird bath. Just keep an eye out while spring cleaning and you’ll find all sorts of components. Old baking trays, pasta bowls, even broken kids’ toys can work if they’re wide and shallow. This variant uses hammered copper woks on a wooden plant stand. Keep the water an inch deep to avoid bird drowning.
4. Candle Plate Bird Bath
Growing up, we could never find the designated candlestick holder. So we oven put candles in any saucer, Tupperware lid, or shallow dish. We made our DIY bird bath by upcycling those candle plates. For stands, you can use any wooden dowels or broomsticks, but coat them with polymer and/or outdoor paint to protect the wood from humidity and weather.
5. Umbrella Bird Bath
This is a labor-intensive one, so set aside a weekend! Grab a large old umbrella anchor it in a bowl or basin full of sand. Fill the inside with cement and shredded Styrofoam, reinforcing it with metal mesh. Plaster the top with cement and sand and create a plastered upper platform. Rig the umbrella handle with piping and now you have a fountain bird bath pond!
6. Recycled Glass Bird Bath
Over the years, you’ve probably acquired a collection of mismatched glassware after the rest of the set broke. If you haven’t, raid your grandma’s kitchen, garage sales, junkyards, and vintage stores. Look for thick, textured, colored glass (because it’s pretty). You can also use old microwave plates. Hold the pieces together with glue and bury the base if you need to.
7. Cement Bowl Bird Bath
This soothing video is over 40 minutes long. And while it won’t show you how to make a bird bath, it’ll make you want one! After all, it’s more than half an hour of watching pretty colorful birds play as you listen to their soothing chirps. To make the DIY bird bath, place a shallow cement bowl in a wider metal trough. Rig the water piping to form a fountain.
8. Terracotta Pebble Bird Bath
Terracotta stacks make beautiful bird baths. And they’re low on the DIY scale because all you need to do is glue them. And they’re heavier than plastic cones and polyurethane planters so they’re less likely to topple. This bird bath is made from conical stacks and decorated with colorful glass pebbles. They’ll catch the light and from pretty reflections that draw birds.
9. DIY Concrete Bird Bath
In the earlier video, the DIY bird bath was made from a deep concrete basin that was filled to keep the tray shallow. It had a pipe through the middle to pump water. This version is a shallower concrete tray on a pedestal. The stand is short, wide, and stubby so it comfortably supports that heavy tray. Spray WD40 to stop molds sticking then pour on the concrete.
10. Tomato Cage Bird Bath
This idea may sound complex, but it’s probably the simplest DIY bird bath on this list. Just grab a tomato cage. You can get one at any agriculture supply store. Or order it online. Spray paint the wires in a shade you like and trim the tips to size. Get a terracotta plate, shallow dish, pasta bowl, or any shallow tray that fits snug at the top of the cage. Voilà all done!
11. Indoor DIY Bird Bath
Some birds like to sip and dip their beaks. Others love to splash their whole bodies. So if the birds in your neighborhood (or house) prefer to get their feathers wet, experiment with this DIY bird shower. It’s cut out of a plastic bottle with holes in the cap to let water in. It helps to tape or smoothen the sharp edges and prevent them from scratching your bathing birds.
12. Broken Record DIY Bird Bath
Yes, you could use broken vinyl for this DIY bird bath. Especially if the vinyl is colored. But cracked CDs are more reflective. They give off that pretty rainbow effect that both attracts birds and stops them from crashing into the water trough. Use a terracotta base tray and stick shiny CD pieces on it. Coat the CD bits with a clear sealant or colorless spray paint.
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13. Bathroom Sink Bird Bath
Here’s a quirky one. You may have hardware leftover after construction or refurbishment. Or maybe you saw a cute sink at the scrapyard. Honestly, you could walk into a hardware store and just buy a new one. Choose any sink style you like – pedestal, floating, wall-mounted – it’s up to you. Plug the sink, seal it shut, and fill it with pebbles before adding water.
14. Teapot Bird Bath
If you have a bunch of teapots that are short and stout, you could carefully pile them to make a DIY bird bath. Again, talk to grandma or check any antique store. You can find retro crockery at flea markets and fairs as well. Just make sure the stack is bottom-heavy and that the ceramics and securely glued together. Use a plate, saucer, or shallow bowl for the top tier.
15. Uncle Joe Stone Bird Bath
Concrete is a common material for DIY bird baths. But stone bird baths are equally practical – they just take a little more work. Use the top of a metal oil drum as a mold to form the base and the top tray. Your bird bath will have a concrete foundation with cobblestones mixed. The pedestal is concrete and cobblestones wrapped around a central metal pole.
16. Salvaged Chair Bird Bath
Stroll around any abandoned lot, junkyard, or maybe even your garden shed and you’re sure to find a broken chair. It could be wood or metal and will likely have no cushions or fabrics. Find a tray or trough that’s the right size to slide into the seat – that’s all you need to do. It does help if you glue the tray into position and weather-proof the chair with outdoor paint.
17. Rhubarb Leaf Bird Bath
Large rhubarb leaves are naturally aesthetic, so they make the perfect mold for a nature-inspired DIY bird bath. Place four overlapping rhubarb leaves on a pile of soil and pour concrete on the back of the leaves. This forms your bird bath mold. Flatten the base so it can sit stably on the ground without tipping. Once it’s dry, scrape the leaves off and fill.
18. Vase and Stump Bird Bath
We’ve already seen a pretty DIY bird bath formed from heavy-colored glass. For this one, just add a couple of sliced tree stumps. Paint the pieces of wood and coat them in weather-proof sealants. Then place glass vases between the wood. You can fill the vases with marbles, pebbles, or colored sand. Use a clear glass bowl with baubles to top the bird bath stack.
19. Hummingbird Fountain Bird Bath
Hummingbirds need special feeders because of how their beaks are shaped. And also because they eat more nectar than they eat insects and seeds. So this hummingbird-themed bird bath will bring all the buzz to your yard! The parts are all over your home – a ball/cup, a drinking straw, and a plastic (shoe) box. You can get the solar fountain at the hardware store.
20. Stone Stack DIY Bird Bath
We’ve seen stone bird baths. And we’ve seen stacked bird baths. But stone stacks? Genius! You just need some rocks or stones that are large, stable, and flat. Pile them on top of each other, making sure they’re firm enough not to fall. Then put a trough or tray on top. It could be a pizza pan, a garbage can lid – anything waterproof. Weigh it down with a heavy rock.
21. Solar Fountain Rock Bird Bath
If you loved the idea of the humming-bath but are uneasy about using Styrofoam or plastic, try this more natural variant. It still uses a solar-powered fountain pump. Instead of a shoebox, use a retro fruit bowl. It helps if the bowl is colorful (to attract birds) and textured (to provide perching spots). Use rocks to ‘bury’ the fountain tubing and maintain its position.
22. Concrete Doily Bird Bath
You’ve probably seen those concrete creation videos online. We saw one earlier making a bird bath out of an umbrella. For this DIY bird bath, a rustic doily is dipped in concrete and draped over an ancient stone bird bath (or maybe a newer pedestal planter). The doily keeps the birds from wandering too deep into the water. Its weight also keeps the bird bath sturdy.
23. Debby’s Glass Bird Bath
Debby’s DIY bird bath uses a fluted vase, a glass pitcher, and a large wok-like bowl. You can use any glass items that appeal to you. They’ll have water splashing around them and light reflecting through them so consider that as you choose texture and color. You can buy them cheap at thrift stores. Use an upside-down fluted vase as the base. It’s wider and more stable.
24. Hanging DIY Bird Bath
You’ll have noticed junkyard glass features on this list a lot. But you don’t have to glue them. This one uses a casserole lid with a knob. You’ll need a tool to safely drill holes in the glass. Or use a glass with pre-drilled holes (like an old chandelier). You can also just coil rope or wire around the tray to hold it up. Just make sure it’s stable, level, and balanced or it’ll leak.
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25. Upcycled Lamp Bird Bath
You know that ugly vintage floor lamps in the attic or basement? Or maybe you could find one at the flea market. Dismantle the lamp, remove the lampshade, and take out all the wiring. The lampstand becomes the pedestal for your bird bath. For the tray section, you can use a bowl, casserole lid, or a ceiling lamp. Just be sure the tray’s weight is well balanced.
26. Chips Platter Bird Bath
Many birds feed off flowers. So having a colorful bird bath will grab their attention. And you could go with something as simple as a plate for chips and dip. These plates have a hollow section in the center for the dip. That’s where (most of) your water will go. Get a stable sturdy stand and anchor it firmly to the ground. Use more than one stand if you need to.
27. Mosaic DIY Bird Bath
This project takes on an old retro bird bath and spices it up. The original is a terracotta tray with a clay bird on the corner. It sits directly on the ground – no stands or pedestals. The same idea works in the new DIY bird bath made from a plastic plant saucer. The saucer gets lined with a mosaic of crushed ceramic plates (though any pretty glass will do). Use Gorilla glue.
28. Solid Wood Bird Bath
A lot of craft influencers will advise not to use wood outdoors. But with plastic coated and weather-proof paint (or sealants), it could last a decade or so. This DIY bird bath is hollowed out of a tree trunk. Seal all the surfaces with clear, waterproof varnish to protect the wood. And while the stump can be deep, the water bowl should be an inch at most to avoid injury.
29. Recirculating Bird Bath
This water fountain works great for smaller birds. Use a deep terracotta planter for stability, but fill it so the water pan stays shallow. In this case, cinder blocks hold the tray up. The terracotta is double-coated with DryLok. This stops water from soaking into the baked clay, which could and cause it to crumble. This model is fitted with a Pulaco pump but any brand will do.
30. DIY Bundt Bird Bath
Right now, you have a mental checklist of things you can use to make a DIY birds bath. So any trip to the flea market, local fair, or thrift store should be quite productive. For this version, use a brightly painted Bundt baking pan to hold the water. You can use a glass vase as a pedestal and an old floor lamp as a base. The article has three other styles you could try.
31. Simplest DIY Bird Bath Ever
Sometimes, you just can’t be bothered with the fuss. And unless you have a sweet tooth, your oven is probably full of trays, troughs, and accessories you’ve never used. So just grab one! Clean it and line it with a few heavy rocks. They weigh it down but they also protect birds – some have poor depth perception so the rocks help them confirm how deep the bird bath is.
Have you tried out any of these DIY bird baths? Tell us how it went in the comments!