use oil, not a powder. u don't want hot dust getting in the bird's eyes. the idea is squirrels, being mammals, have taste buds while birds have few if any. and hot pepper doesn't bother the bird's digestive system either. of course, some of those tree rats actually like spicy food (but they're that rate exception). damn, now I think I'll have one of the chili beers in my stash when I get off work in another two hours.