Every bird has its own housing standards, nothing too small and nothing too big, with an entrance to accommodate folded wings but not predators. When you are planning your birdhouse for the Birdhouse Bonanza Auction, you will want to cater to the birds’ demands. Several websites, like www.birdwatching-bliss.com , www.canadianwoodworking.com ,and www.hww.ca/en/issues-and-topics/nest-boxes-for-birds.html have charts to help you gauge an appropriate size. Further, birds like a clean house, so your creation should have easy access through a removable roof or panel.
Most small birds like chickadees want a floor plan of about 4×4 inches, with a 1 1/8” hole. Any larger and the house can be attacked by sparrows. If the hole is placed 4” above floor level, the babies will be safe and snug.
It’s a good idea to watch for wrens. Cute as they are, they are nest hoarders! They’ll fill spare houses with twigs to keep other birds out. Hence, the clean out panel! Build them their own retreats and you could be lucky that they will return to the same house annually.
Have robins nested above your porch light? They’re looking for a nesting shelf, not a birdhouse, but that’s easily built too, using a coffee can or a board remnant that you are welcome to decorate for their pleasure. They’d like a roof, but it must be at least 7” above the shelf.
Birdhouse Bonanza already has requests for swallow and martin houses. These larger structures will encourage any communal type birds. However a unique structure could be built of several smaller birdhouses congregated in one larger structure. Condo’s, anyone?
Once you’ve settled on size, you’re set to go. Birds aren’t fussy about finishing, so gear up your imagination: shape, materials, and colour are your choice! In fact, the birds are far more interested in the interior than the exterior, so here’s your chance to innovate.
To register your entry for the auction before April 14, please contact Glenda Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org or Barbara Carroll at email@example.com . All proceeds from the auction will help fund the Mississippi Madawaska Land Trust and the High Lonesome Nature Reserve. (www.mmlt.ca)