Aviaries can be a relaxing and enjoyable "home away from home" for your birds. It can be a bird paradise to enjoy throughout the year. Birds want nothing more than freedom to fly about and socialise with other birds, and an aviary gives them this opportunity. It's a good idea to make your aviary as large as possible so that your birds will have plenty of room to fly around and explore. The number of birds in your aviary may grow, so you'll want to make sure you have plenty of space for them.
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Things you need
- Drawn plans for the aviary
- Fence posts
- 16-gauge welded galvanised wire
- Galvanised welded-wire cloth
- Long wide curtains
- Bird cages
- Bird feeding stations
- Potted plants
Check with your neighbourhood regulations. Some neighbourhoods and city zones have special requirements for residents who want to add things to their property. Also, check with your neighbours to see how they feel about the potential noises from your birds. Make sure you're in the clear to construct an aviary in your yard before you move on to the next step.
Decide on the size and location of the aviary. Your aviary should have plenty of room for the birds to fly around. It's an ideal place for your birds to literally stretch their wings and move around. Make your aviary as large as you can. Also, decide on if you want the aviary to be attached to your porch, alongside your house or further away in your yard. Keep your aviary out of view of the street to avoid car lights frightening the birds and to keep away potential thieves.
Set up your foundation. The foundation of your aviary should be made of concrete. Not only will it provide a sturdy ground for you and the birds to move around it, it will be easier to clean. Once the concrete is laid out and dried, cover it with a light coating of sand or pine shavings. Leave some of the ground clear for the birds to stand on.
Add the walls. Hammer fence posts in areas around the foundation. Wrap this up with 16-gauge welded galvanised wire. Be sure to add extra wiring over this enclosure to avoid predators from getting in. Also, make sure your fencing goes two feet under the foundation to prevent predators from digging their way under the fence and into the aviary. Cover your walls with a galvanised welded-wire cloth.
Install the doors. The doors of your aviary can be long curtains or even shower curtains. Make the doors easy to open without having to grasp a handle, as your hands may be busy carrying birds in and out of the aviary. It's a good idea to have double doors to avoid any birds from escaping as you move in and out of the aviary.
Make the roof. Your roof should also be covered with wiring. As you did with the wall wiring, add extra wire so there's no way for predators to squeeze through. Cover this roof with the galvanised welded-wire cloth and secure it to the posts with nails. Leave some areas of the wire roof visible for sunshine to come through but make sure you cover it up for rainy and snowy weather.
Create a covered entryway. When you're cleaning the aviary or otherwise need the birds out, it's a good idea to have a covered entrance to the aviary. This is especially helpful if it's raining or if the birds need protection from predators. Create this covered entrance with boards, mesh fencing and posts. Cover it with an awning found at a local hardware store. Add large, sturdy potted plants for the birds to shelter in, as well as beams for the birds to hang out on until they can return to the aviary.
Furnish the aviary. Place large opened cages, perches and feeding stations for your birds in the aviary. Don't place or hang a perch too close to the wires or a predator might reach in and snatch your bird.
Tips and warnings
- Be sure to keep the aviary clean and free of bird droppings.
- Set up a heat lamp inside the aviary during the winter to keep your birds warm.
- Allow your birds to acclimate to the aviary by spending a few hours inside of it every day for a month or so before leaving them in there throughout the year.
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