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Poplar and Oak Birdhouse

When the wife asks for a birdhouse for Christmas… but you have a bit of an addiction to the woodshop.

Where the brown meets, the grey is a seam with a hinge so it can be cleaned out. Probably good since I don’t know if the birds are going to appreciate the fine craftsmanship here.

Something tells me she might have got more than she bargained for with this one.

Some Tips on Making a Birdhouse

Want to try building something like this yourself? There’s a huge selection of free Christmas decoration woodworking plans you can work through.

If you want to go further than that, you’ll find plans for some stunning designs (and plenty more) available to download here.

  1. The internal dimensions matter. First, determine what species of bird the house is for and adjust the dimensions accordingly. Width, depth, height, and the distance from the floor to the hole all matter. Some birds will require sawdust inside the house. Others will want to bring in their own construction materials, like moss, hay and feathers.
  2. The hole dimension matters. Too big a hole makes it easier for predators (other birds, squirrels, minks etc) to get in. Too big a hole makes it easy for bigger species to drive away the smaller species of birds. Important if you’re trying to make houses for more endangered birds and keep away the more common ones. The hole can also be reinforced to prevent squirrels from chewing it bigger for easier access. Woodpeckers can just a make hole in the side if they wish, so it won’t stop them.
  3. No perches. The hole should be in the front face of the house with no ledges or perches for predators to sit on. Birds that use the house can fly straight in without any perch needed.
  4. The house needs to stay as dry as possible. The roof should be solid with no holes or gaps and have wide eaves to keep rainwater out. The house can be separated from the surface of the tree or wall it’s placed on. Rainwater getting inside the house may also lead to the chicks freezing to death. A few holes in the bottom can be added for ventilation.

Additionally, the placement of the house matters. It shouldn’t be in direct sunlight in the summer. Some birds prefer a more covered location, others need wider space in front. If there is no danger of the house being tampered with, it is recommended that the house is placed low enough that cleaning it after the breeding season is easy. Roofs or sides that can be opened will help with the cleaning. Cleaning should be done regularly to kill ticks and other parasites.