Designing A Bird House

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A growing community of bird enthusiasts not only enjoy the pleasure of bird-watching, which normally means observing birds quietly from a distance, they also extend this hobby to designing and building bird houses to attract them right into their own garden or backyard. Designing a bird house does not have to cost the earth and for anyone who enjoys woodworking and do-it-yourself activity it is a perfect way to spark your creativity.

There are a variety of ready-made kits for the novice bird house hobbyists to get you started but if you enjoy a challenge, constructing a bird house would require some initial design planning, then it is just a matter of assembling pieces of wood and materials that can be easily sourced from any hardware stores together, dusting off and putting your garage power tools to good use!

To get some new ideas or inspiration, there are a host of websites on the internet that offer invaluable insight into the process of bird house design and construction. Many books and publications target bird house construction for a specific species such as sparrows, titmice, swallows and nuthatches which often take advantage of a readily available nesting box or custom-made bird house.

Understanding the type of birds for which the bird houses are built is important when designing any bird house. The design of your bird house often does depend on a range of factors such as the size of the bird, their nesting behaviour (for example sparrows are gregarious creatures and like living in groups, therefore a bird house that can accommodate at least 3 mating pairs would be ideal), whether your bird house is predator-proof (for example the bird needs to feel safe roosting or nesting in your robust bird house with the entrance hole small enough to allow the bird through but too small for any predators to cause any trouble) and whether your bird house is located at a high enough location to fend off predators such as bigger birds, cats or dogs with ideal nesting conditions (for example the bird house is not in direct sunlight which could cause overheating to offspring and provides shelter from the rain.)

Most birds would choose a bird house that resembles a tree cavity, a place where the conditions are dry and relatively warm, free from dust or dampness and most importantly a place where predators cannot easily reach. Just like in their natural environment, use natural nesting materials such as coconut fibres, twigs and dry grass in your bird house to encourage mating. Weather proof the bird house with bird friendly non-toxic water-proof paint and ensure there are no loose bits that may come apart due to harsher weather conditions.

Building a bird house can be a family activity enjoyed by the young and old. Share your ideas with other budding bird house builders either through online forums, craft fairs or bird house suppliers. Not only is it a rewarding experience to design and create a bird house from scratch, the ultimate compliment will be when you find a contented mating pair nesting in it.

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