Rascal the Raccoon with a White-breasted Nuthatch
Are you curious about how we create our Seed Cylinder Characters like Rascal the Raccoon
, Hoot the Owl
, Buttons the Snowman or Preston the Penguin?
First I look for ideas that have an “it’s so cute, I’ve got to have one” response. Then I go through a series of questions to determine if the idea can actually be turned into a bird food – what bird seed and food should be used, would it attract birds and could they eat it, and is the price something I believe customers are willing to pay.
We start with a picture that I find or draw, and then we go through multiple versions to achieve the overall look, cost and appeals to the birds. With Rascal the Raccoon, our newest character, it began with this picture. We made many adjustments along the way to cut costs and to achieve the cute factor.
Initial character or Rascal
There is a lot of hand decorating that goes into making our Seed Cylinder Characters. When you make a character out of bird seed, you lose a lot of detail and have limitations regarding which seed and food colors are natural. We don’t color our bird seed. We choose seeds, fruit, nuts, etc. whose natural color will give us not only the look we want, but that the birds will eat. This limits our options quite a bit.
Final Rascal the Raccoon Bird Seed Cylinder
We test the new food in various areas throughout North America to make sure the birds in different geographic regions like it. At home, I have a lot of fun with my son checking what body parts the birds have eaten while we’re at work and school.
Once the character is complete, we work on naming and packaging. We get photography and video and introduce the new character to our storeowners, who then order them to sell to you.
I love feeding the birds and coming up with new ways that enhance your enjoyment of your birds.
We hope you find Rascal as adorable as we do and that you and your birds will enjoy him or one of his friends (Hoot the Owl, Preston the Penguin, Buttons the Snowman). Customers tell us they love to give these characters as gifts, especially to the person who already has everything.