We had a heavy snow and it rapidly covered the railing where I feed my birds. Didn't want to go out in the snow to get one so I improvised. Found 2 tall flower pots and 2 pieces of 4 x 4 and had 2 pieces of plexiglas so I set the pots about 18" apart and stacked the 4 x 4's and layed the plexiglas on top. Then I laid a couple of heavey boards on top to keep all from blowing away. Instant bird feeder for the cardinals and others who cannot deal with thistle sacks. It took them a couple of minutes to get used to this new thing and then it was covered with birds. Even the doves came to it and they are about the most timid birds around. Even got a pair of bluebirds. So if you get a sudden snowfall, look around for things laying around the house, garage and you are bound to find something that will work and it doesn't cost you anything.