Date: 9/15/20 10:04 am
From: Jay Jones <jonesjay62...>
Subject: Re: Bird Nest Box Options
A lot of good info in this post. I would not recommend using treated lumber
to build birdboxes. Off gases released from treated lumber may harm newly
hatched nestlings. Cedar is a fine alternative. Another is pine, with the
exterior painted a light color to reduce conducted heat and to provide some
protection from the elements. It’s the top of wooden boxes that deteriorate
first; I have recently constructed my boxes with composite tile roofs.
These roofs hold up extremely well and are readily accepted by nesting
birds.

NWA Master Naturalists are experimenting with BPA-free white SuperGourds
with 1.5 inch entry holes. The first of these gourds will be mounted this
coming Spring at Woolsey Wet Prairie Bird Sanctuary.

Regardless of construction materials or techniques, ALL cavity nesters need
our help. Chain saws have severely limited the number of cavities provided
by nature.

Rick Jones

On Tue, Sep 15, 2020 at 11:39 AM Jerry Davis <jwdavis...> wrote:

>
>
>
>
>
>
>
>
> *Bird Nest Box Options*
>
>
> *Jerry Wayne Davis*
>
>
> *September 11, 2020*
>
>
> My
>
> post provided some insight into the housing shortage for cavity nesting
> birds
>
> along with construction measurements, hole sizes and placement locations.
> Some
>
> expressed a desire to put up nest boxes but could not afford them. In
> addition
>
> to leaving your snags and hollow trees, consider:
>
>
> One 6 foot by 5 ½ inch by 5/8 inch cedar or treated
>
> fencing will make a bluebird, chickadee or titmouse box. This costs about
> $3.15.
>
> The tools needed are a saw, 1 ½ inch drill bit to drill the hole and some
> nails
>
> or screws and a screwdriver or hammer.
>
>
> Some materials can be obtained at home and building
>
> construction sites with scrap wood they will have to haul off. Sawmills
> have
>
> pieces of lumber that they may have to deal with and may give you
> material.
>
> Check the material throw a way garbage lumber stores like Lowe’s and Home
> Depot.
>
> They like to sell their lumber but they have scraps some may give you.
>
>
>
> It
>
> take trees about 100 years to get big and old enough for cavities. It
> takes
>
> fungi about 30 years to rot the center of a tree and then it may take more
> years
>
> for the hollow center to be accessed by broken limbs or woodpeckers. When
> you
>
> cut down a snag or hollow tree you have destroyed what it too natural
> forces
>
> over 100 years to make. Recycling centers have woody debris from trees. If
> you
>
> see a hollow cut section you can acquire this for a couple of options. You
> can
>
> put boards on each hollow end and in one end cut the size hole needed for
> the
>
> species you are managing for, or you can close up both ends and drill or
> cut the
>
> appropriate size access hole through the outer trunk shell. I often see
> perfect
>
> hollow pieces of wood in people’s wood piles that would be good for nest
> boxes.
>
>
>
> If
>
> you have a hollow tree you can drill or cut a hole to access the inner
> hollow.
>
> Large access holes are needed for owls and wood ducks but if you have a
> smaller
>
> species in mind, put a wooden plate over the cutout with the plate having
> the
>
> size hole needed.
>
>
> You can also provide nesting inserts like we do for the
>
> Red-cockaded woodpecker recovery. Take a wooden block the right size and
> softer
>
> wood like cedar is easier to work, hollow out the center, place a cap to
> cover
>
> the hole drilled from the top and drill a hole from the side to connect
> with the
>
> hollow center. Cut a section out of the tree trunk, insert the nest box
> and fill
>
> around the edges with wood putty. Examples of woodpecker insert
> construction can
>
> be found on-line.
>
>
> Plant Birdhouse gourds in your garden or flower beds.
>
> There are do it yourself options and with a little time and effort you can
> have
>
> nest boxes out for winter roosting and Spring nesting season. Don’t just
> limit
>
> your efforts to birds but provide for mammals, reptiles, amphibians and
>
> invertebrates. Squirrels that nests in cavities will have three out of
> four
>
> young survive but if they nest in leaf nests only one out of four will
> survive.
>
> Bats, tree frogs, broad-headed skinks and others also need help.
>
>
>
>

 
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