Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Birdhouse Selection Process Reviewed

Your Birdhouse Selection Is More Important Than You Might Think

I wanted to take a little time today to discuss some important things to remember about the process of birdhouse selection. You might be thinking what process? I just find one that will be cute in my yard, hang it and the birds will come. Well, that may be one way but I can tell you it won't bring you much success if you are actually hoping to encourage birds to nest in your yard.

If you do not care whether birds actually nest in the birdhouse, you can pick something that suits your taste and reflects your personality for your yard or garden. My husband and I would get a real kick out of a birdhouse like the one below but I doubt that we would have much luck actually getting a bird to use it to lay their eggs and hatch their offspring.

Birds are not attracted by what we humans think is cute, pretty or quirky. They want safety for themselves and their young. So, there are things that we should take into consideration if we want to provide a place for our feathered friends to call home.

Important Things To Consider In Your Birdhouse Selection

  • Sizing
  • Heating and Cooling
  • Proper drainage
  • Safety
  • Mounting and accessibility
It is a good idea to research the species of bird that you hope to attract and find out what size entrance hole is best for them. The size of the floor space is important, also. You want enough room for the adult bird and the growing young to be able to move around. The distance from the floor to the entrance hole is also important. 

The materials that the birdhouse is made of is important, too. Wood is your best bet because it can stay cool in the summer and provide warmth in the winter. 

Look to see if the birdhouse provides drainage. You do not want water to stay inside where it can start to grow mold or bacteria. A nice overhang on the roof will also help to keep water out of the birdhouse.

A lot of the pre-made birdhouses have a perch. Most bird species do not require a perch at their nest. The perch actually allows an unsafe area where a predator has an easier way to get into the inside of the nesting area. Painted or stained birdhouses can be toxic to our feathered friends so natural wood is safer to use. 

You should also select a birdhouse that is easy to mount and has one side that you can open. You will need to open the birdhouse to clean it. There are several ways to mount the different styles of birdhouses but your best bet is to have it on a pole. Predators will have a more difficult time with a pole than a tree or fence. 

Research Before You Buy

I feel that if you really want to successfully encourage birds to nest in your yard or garden that a little research can help you make a good decision. Perhaps invest in a book that gives you the information you will need.

The book above has been produced in association with the National Audubon Society. Advice from them can be trusted for a safe and inviting birdhouse. It covers several species of birds to build a birdhouse for, from the little wren to even raptors.

As I write this article, we are approaching the time of the year that birds begin to choose a place to nest and bring the next generation of their species into the world. If you want to be a part of that, find a safe birdhouse to place in your backyard or garden. 



Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.

6 comments:

  1. Excellent tips for choosing or building a birdhouse, Beverly. I've lived in rental homes and apartments all my life, so have never had the opportunity to have a birdhouse to attract our feathered friends. But my son and my brother do and when I visit I can see how much they enjoy watching the birds who live in their yards.

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  2. I love that bird camper. What a hoot! However, I know that your advice to become educated on what the birds that hang around your yard prefer in a safe house for their nests and their young. Great advice!

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  3. This is such a great article with excellent advice! It is so easy to get taken in by "pretty" or a paint job on a birdhouse. There really is a huge difference is decorative and useful, especially with birdhouses. We never want to inadvertently endanger the little bird friends we are enticing to our yards. That book is a wonderful suggestion.

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  4. So much great information here Bev. I wonder how many people are disappointed when no birds come to their hanging bird houses, because they just don't fit the needs of the birds in their area. Thanks for making people aware that there are certain "rules" if you want the birds to come.......

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  5. So far I've not had a birdhouse. Most of our birds just use the trees. I'm wondering if birds in mild climates need them. Maybe I should research it a bit more, as you say. I would never have thought of some of the things you brought up as to what is good for the birds.

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  6. I love that little birdhouse! It's so cute!

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