How to make wooden bird houses

Written by b.t. alo
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How to make wooden bird houses
A brightly painted bird house. (birdhouse image by Igor Zhorov from Fotolia.com)

Bird houses provide a place for nesting for various types of birds. Most bird houses are put up around a home or garden by bird enthusiasts. When building bird houses, it is important to make them as weather proof as possible, with adequate ventilation, and to place them in an area the birds will feel secure nesting in---that means an area not too busy with human activity in most cases.

Skill level:
Easy

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Things you need

  • 4 wooden slabs, 6 by 8, 1/4 inch wide
  • 2 wooden slabs 6 by 6, 1/4 inch wide
  • Scroll saw
  • Hammer
  • Nails
  • 2 hinges, small sized
  • Door clasp
  • Drill
  • Screws

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Instructions

  1. 1

    Cut a door in the centre of one of the four slabs with the scroll saw, around two inches high and wide. This is a door size suitable for house finches.

  2. 2

    Arrange the 4 slabs into a rectangle box, nailing them together.

  3. 3

    Nail one of the 6 by 6 slabs onto the bottom of the box.

  4. 4

    Drill three holes, equidistant apart around 1/2 inch from the top of each side of the box, for ventilation.

  5. 5

    Place the remaining 6 by 6 slab on top of the box, for the lid. Drill in the hinges to the box and the lid, making sure the lid stays aligned. Screw the door clasp in on the opposite side of the hinges, so that you have a lid that lifts and locks.

Tips and warnings

  • This bird house is suitable for house finches and similar sized birds. Always check the housing requirements of the species you want to attract, and build a bird house to suit that species.
  • Use aluminium nails to help prevent rusting and prolong the life of the bird house.
  • Always place a birdhouse in the natural preferred nesting area of the species you want to attract---some birds, like house finches, like under eaves and on porches, while others prefer garden or wooded areas, and others open fields.
  • Clean out the bird house around March, after nesting season.
  • Smaller birds, such as finches, do not require a perch on the outside of their house, as is commonly misconceived. Furthermore, perches can aid predators, like rats and snakes, in getting inside the house.
  • Never use treated lumber for a bird house, as this can leach chemical fumes into the bird house, killing the inhabitants.

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