If you like birds and their song you will enjoy having them around in your garden all the time. The sure way to keep them coming is to build a birdhouse. You can always buy one already made, but it is surely much better and more fun if you build a birdhouse yourself. Just be sure it’s durable, rainproof and easily accessible for cleaning.
You can use different materials for building a birdhouse, but wood is generally the best choice. Metal becomes extremely hot when it’s sunny, so it’s not recommended for a birdhouse. Birds should be able to live and nest in it, so choose the type of wood that will naturally deter insects from getting into it, such as cedar. This way, the insect pests will not prevent the birds from nesting there.
Different birds need different birdhouses, so first find out what types of birds live in your area, and according to that choose a type of a birdhouse you will build. If you have a big garden, use it to build more than one type of birdhouse so that more types of birds would come. Just remember that they shouldn’t be placed too close together, because there are birds which insist on territorial rights and they might use empty bird houses to fight with other birds.
When you decide what birds you want to attract, find the appropriate bird house plans. They have detailed instructions for everything you need to build a particular kind of bird house as well as the information on where to place it. These plans can be very simple or really complex, so you can choose the one that suits you. If this is the first time you are making a birdhouse, it would be better to start with some easier plan.
Don’t paint, stain, varnish, or treat the inside or around the hole entrance if you want the birds to come back. And if you paint the outside, make sure it’s dry before you put it up. Be cautious with treated lumber as well, it often contains many dangerous chemical compounds, such as arsenic which could be poisonous for the birds. You’ll also need to use a good quality exterior wood glue (never use super glue), nails or screws to put the parts together. Screws are especially good since they make it easier when it comes to cleaning the house.
Make sure you drill the right entrance hole for the bird you are trying to attract. It should be near the top of the box and proportional to the size of the bird which will use the house. Don’t forget to plan several holes near the top of the box, that way when it’s hot there will be enough air circulation, which also keeps insect populations down. When it comes to the roof, it should be constructed with sufficient pitch to shed water and prevent the rain to get inside. And just in case some water does get into the house, you should drill small holes in the floor to allow the water to drain away.
The interior walls should be roughened or grooved so as to help the young to climb to the opening. Also avoid putting the perch, since it will only give the predator birds a place to sit and wait.
When you finish building your birdhouse, decide on where you will put it. First, it should be a place with not much people activity. It should be far from any predators, cats for example. It shouldn’t be placed on a direct sunlight, and the entrance shouldn’t face the wind. If you decide to put in the sun, make it be white to reflect the hit.
And finally, if you want to feed you birds, never put any food in the house itself, it will just be an invitation for predators and insects. Bird feeders are used for food, and they should be placed far away from the house.
Birdhouses are great fun if you love birds. If you put them in your garden you will have a lot of different types of birds coming and going.
When you finish building and putting up your birdhouse, you can relax and enjoy the songs of your new bird friends.