Winter and spring is a perfect time to plan ahead and encourage more birds to visit your garden and yard. Birds eat many harmful garden pests and add song and activity to the yard. I have spent many quiet mornings watching birds build their nests.
One way to encourage more birds is to add birdhouses and perches in your yard. The houses also add color and interest to you yard.
It’s important when building your birdhouse to make the size of the entrance proportionate to the type of bird you wish to attract. Remember that different species of birds have different preferences. If you want to attract small bird make sure the bird holes are smaller otherwise the bigger more aggressive birds will move in a chase the small birds away. You will need to do research if you want to attract certain birds into your yard. This information can be found in bird books and online.
You will also need to drill holes for ventilation. This adds a little more light to their housing and air. I also build my house with bottoms that have hinges so that I can easily clean out a birdhouse.
Birds prefer a rough surface both in and outside of the entrance. This makes it easier for the birds to get in and out. I also add a perch for them to use. One other factor to take into consideration is color. If you make their house a bright color they may not use it. I try and stay with mellow natural colors.
Hang a protective collar just below the birdhouse to help prevent squirrels from eating all the bird feed.
One last important consideration is to place your birdhouse at least six feet off the ground. This will help to deter cats, raccoons and other animals from bothering the birdhouse.
Many birds have been displaced in recent years with barns being removed and areas becoming more developed so it’s important to think of birds and their importance in the environment. Build a birdhouse, put up a feeder and or plant some low-branched shrubs for birds to seek cover in.