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Milk carton bird feeder ready in minutes


May is here and the birds are chirping and flitting about. Why not give your feathered friends a new home? This whimsical birdhouse is easy to make using a milk carton and items collected from around your house and yard.

Here's how:

Wash and dry an empty half-gallon paper milk carton. An adult may cut out a circle about 1 1/2 inch in diameter on one of the side panels of the carton, 3 inches above the base of the carton. For a perch for the birds, poke a small hole below the large hole and partially insert a 5-inch long, 3/16-inch dowel in the small hole.

Close the top of the carton and glue it shut.

Create a natural exterior for the house by covering the carton with "nature finds." For example, pile and glue twigs evenly across the top of the carton. Cover the walls of the house with bark, moss, pinecones and small branches from evergreens (do not pick these materials off trees; collect them from the ground).

When the glue is completely dry, poke a hole at the top of the carton. Loop a piece of wire or twine through the hole and hang the house from a tree branch or a fence post. Celebrate May with an "open house" to welcome the birds to the new abode.

To share your comments or ideas for family projects, write Donna Erickson, Features Department, The Sun, Baltimore 21278.

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