Bird house information

When constructing (or buying) a birdhouse, there are some very important things to keep in mind:

List of 12 items • Make sure that the birdhouse has drainage slots or holes. You don't want any nestlings to drown during a sudden storm. • Make sure there are slots near the roofline for heat to escape in the summer to keep the birds as cool as possible. • Use untreated wood. The chemicals used to treat some wood can be very toxic if a bird gnaws at it. Additionally, fumes can accumulate inside the house during summertime temperatures. • Use wood that is fairly thick to build your birdhouse. Wood will act as an insulator to temperature extremes during the winter and summer. • Leave the inside of the house unpainted. • If you use paint on the outside of the house, use a light color that will blend into the surroundings. Brightly colored houses are cute but just as your eye is drawn to them, so will the birds' predators. • Use the proper size entrance hole for the type of bird you wish to attract. If you have too large a hole, the house may be larger birds, leaving the small ones with no place to nest. • Do not put a perch near the entrance hole. The nesting birds do not need the perch to get in and out of the birdhouse. The perch only encourages predators to harass and possibly harm the nestlings and incubating parents. • There should be an easy way to monitor and clean out the house. If you are trying to attract bluebirds, House Sparrows may try to build nests that you need to clear out to so bluebirds select the house. Also at the end of winter, you will want to clean out the birdhouses. If the only access to the inside of the house is through the entrance hole, you will have a difficult time! • If possible, choose a birdhouse plan that has a roof that extends out over the entrance hole. This type of roof will help during rainstorms. • Make sure to place your birdhouse where the birds will be safe. Do not place the birdhouses on tree trunks where squirrels, snakes and other predators can crawl up the tree and get into the house. Use baffles to deter many predators. • Place the birdhouse where you and your family can observe it but away from backyard traffic. A birdhouse near the dog house and kids play area may not get selected by bird families. list end

Birdhouse Dimensions

The table that follows was taken from a US Fish & Wildlife Service pamphlet.

<##Nest Box Dimensions Note a (*) means use nesting shelf, platform with three sides and an open front

Box Entrance Placement floor height height diameter height Species inches inches inches inches feet =============================================================== American Robin* 7x8 8 --- --- 6-15


Eastern & Bluebird 5x5 8-12 6-10 1-1/2 4-6


Western & Mountain Bluebird 5x5 8-12 6-10 1-9/16 4-6


Chickadees 4x4 8-10 6-8 1-1/8 4-15


Titmice 4x4 10-12 6-10 1-1/4 5-15


Ash-throated Flycatcher 6x6 8-12 6-10 1-1/2 5-15


Great Crested Flycatcher 6x6 8-12 6-10 1-3/4 5-15


Phoebes* 6x6 6 --- --- 8-12


Brown-headed Pygmy and Red-breasted Nuthatch 4x4 8-10 6-8 1-1/4 5-15


White- breasted Nuthatch 4x4 8-10 6-8 1-3/8 5-15


Prothonotary Warbler 5x5 6 4-5 1-1/8 4-8


Barn Swallow* 6x6 6 --- --- 8-12


Purple Martin 6x6 6 1-2 2-1/4 6-20


Tree and Violet-Green Swallows 5x5 6-8 4-6 1-1/2 5-15


Downy Woodpecker 4x4 8-10 6-8 1-1/4 5-15


Hairy Woodpecker 6x6 12-15 9-12 1-1/2 8-20


Lewis's Woodpecker 7x7 16-18 14-16 2-1/2 12-20


Northern Flicker 7x7 16-18 14-16 2-1/2 6-20


Pileated Woodpecker 8x8 16-24 12-20 3x4 15-25


Red-Headed Woodpecker 6x6 12-15 9-12 2 10-20


Yellow- bellied Sapsucker 5x5 12-15 9-12 1-1/2 10-20


Bewick's and House wrens 4x4 6-8 4-6 1-1/4 5-10


Carolina Wren 4x4 6-8 4-6 1-1/2 5-10


Barn Owls 10x18 15-18 4 6 12-18


Screech Owls and Kestrel 8x8 12-15 9-12 3 10-30


Osprey 48x48 platform


Red-tailed Hawk and Great Horned Owl 24x24 platform


Wood Ducks 10x18 10-24 12-16 4 10-20


*Use nesting shelf, platform with three sides and an open front