Article: How to put up and maintain a birdhouse: Untitled

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Image How to put up and maintain a birdhouse
By Lance Gardner on June 16, 2010

You have a birdhouse and are all excited to get it hung up. Wow, won’t it be fun to watch those birds raise their first family in your yard? They will even help you out in your garden eating a lot of bugs. Before you make some big mistakes, however, it is a good idea to take some time to pick a good place for it, and ensure it is hung well.

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Imagenap
Jun 15, 2010 6:57 PM CST
Name: Nancy
Buffalo NY
Interesting topic, and great photos!
ImageCandyce
Jun 15, 2010 7:08 PM CST
Name: Candyce Fulford
N of MA, E of VT, W of ME, S o
Grandmother Extraordinaire
Lance:

I've heard that the opening of the birdhouse should be facing the east. Is this correct for anywhere in the country?
Homemakers' Haven Come Join the "A" Team!
ImageLance
Jun 16, 2010 7:16 AM CST
Name: Lance Gardner
coastal plain Virginia
Question authority, guide in wisdom
Thank you both for reading, it seems like this may be a well read article, even though the topic seems a bit unusual.
Locating and positioning your birdhouse depends on what type of bird you want, how warm or cold it is, time of year, and other factors. As an example, bluebirds prefer an open area in front of their house, as they search for insects in clearings, and can easily fly in and out. They also like perches nearby, so they can keep watch. In the spring, or anytime of the year in cooler areas, having the house where it will get morning sun to warm in up in the morning is preferable. As it gets hotter, shade, especially in the afternoon, is essential to prevent cooked eggs and babies.
So, if you need to face the house north so it is facing an open area, that is more important than facing it east. If you have the place for it, face it east, where it gets morning sun and afternoon shade, towards an open area, with perches not too far away. In my yard, I can do this, as I have lots of large trees around the small open yard/garden area. I have also place birdhouses all over the place, so I get different types of birds, and they can all choose what they like the most.
Let me know how your bird raising goes. It can be quite fun.
Look and listen for the welfare of the whole people and have always in view not only the present but also the coming generations, even those whose faces are yet beneath the surface of the ground -- the unborn of the future Nation. The Constitution of the Iroquois Nations.
Dogs; Family Fun Unplugged; Perennials, Annuals, Veggies; Happy Birthday Wishes
ImageCandyce
Jun 16, 2010 10:52 AM CST
Name: Candyce Fulford
N of MA, E of VT, W of ME, S o
Grandmother Extraordinaire
Thanks so much, Lance.
We love watching the birds in our yard. We have several feeders, both low and high, and of course, hummingbird feeders. My biggest thrill is in late summer when the cedar waxwings attack the berries on the honeysuckle bush that's right outside our family room window.
Homemakers' Haven Come Join the "A" Team!
Imagesheryl
Jun 20, 2010 5:03 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
Any suggestions on how to not attract the English sparrows? Both of my houses are home to nests, and I've been told that they're "thugs".
ImageLance
Jun 21, 2010 7:24 AM CST
Name: Lance Gardner
coastal plain Virginia
Question authority, guide in wisdom
From the article: It is recommended to check your birdhouse once a week to see how the residents are doing, and to ensure that house sparrows are not using it. If you see the invasive (not native, therefore not protected) sparrows using the box, remove their nests. If they rebuild, plug the hole for a week or so until they give up. For really persistent problems, check out other sources such as http://www.sialis.org/, and let me know what works. House sparrows and starlings are very aggressive, and will kill the eggs, babies, and parents, so they must be removed.
So yes, Eurasian house sparrows are a serious problem and should be eliminated by any means you can. I don't want to promote inhumane methods, but what house sparrows do to native birds when they find them in a box is rather horrible, so whenever you can remove the sparrows, you should. I will eliminate 3 types of birds in my own yard, sometimes even using an air rifle or pellet gun - starlings, house sparrows, and cowbirds. Cowbirds are almost native around here, being more of a plains bird, but are also nest parasites responsible for the loss of a large number of songbirds.
For house sparrows, there are also traps you can buy or make, and sparrow spookers you can put up on bluebird houses. Check out the links in the article, and you can also do a google search using keywords such as 'sparrow spooker bluebird', 'house sparrow trap', 'bluebird house pest', and similar.
I personally do not have much of a problem with bird pests because I am in the middle of the woods, so I can't really offer first hand experience methods. So the best I can suggest is to try different things, and please let me know and others reading this section know what works for you. My final thought is that, just like weeding a garden, bird house maintenance and pest elimination is exactly that: maintenance. Therefore, you will need to keep doing whatever works in the interest of protecting our native birds.
I hope you find a method that works well for you. Smileys from my son. Rolling my eyes. Sticking tongue out Drooling Group hug Smiling Hilarious! Hurray! I tip my hat to you.
Look and listen for the welfare of the whole people and have always in view not only the present but also the coming generations, even those whose faces are yet beneath the surface of the ground -- the unborn of the future Nation. The Constitution of the Iroquois Nations.
Dogs; Family Fun Unplugged; Perennials, Annuals, Veggies; Happy Birthday Wishes
Imagesheryl
Jun 21, 2010 4:48 PM CST
Name: Sheryl
Middle Tennessee, 6b
I'm sorry, Lance, I should have read a little more carefully.

Thanks much for the information, I will let you what works.

Thanks for the smileys - back atcha! Rolling on the floor laughing Blinking Thumbs up
ImageLance
Jun 21, 2010 6:10 PM CST
Name: Lance Gardner
coastal plain Virginia
Question authority, guide in wisdom
No need to apologize, I just hope the information comes in handy. I often have a memory like a colander - full or holes, and only holds in the biggest stuff.
Look and listen for the welfare of the whole people and have always in view not only the present but also the coming generations, even those whose faces are yet beneath the surface of the ground -- the unborn of the future Nation. The Constitution of the Iroquois Nations.
Dogs; Family Fun Unplugged; Perennials, Annuals, Veggies; Happy Birthday Wishes

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