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How to make a bird box

Bird watching is a relaxing and satisfying activity that is easy for most people to do. You can bring the birds to your own garden by building them a bird box or a variation of a bird house. Once you have your materials, you can spend a single afternoon building a cozy home for the birds in your area so that they have a safe place to live during the breeding season. The best thing about bird boxes is that they can be reused, so you can clean them up and use them over and over again!


[[[[Edit]Cutting the wood

  1. Measure and cut 2 side panels of untreated wood. Use pine, cedar or plywood that is thick. Use a tape measure and a ruler to measure out the two side panels and saw them out with a saw. Cut out two panels that are both wide and long on one side and long on the other.[1]
    • The side panels will be slanted at the top to create the classic bird box shape.
    • To find untreated wood, look for wood that has been approved by the Forest Stewardship Council or FSC by looking for the FSC logo on the label.
    • Since all your pieces have the same width, it can help to start with a piece of wood that is wide.
  2. Cut out the front, base, roof and back of the same wood. Grab a tape measure with the same wood and measure out four new pieces. Then use a saw to cut them out. The measurements for each piece are:[2]
    • Front: wide and long.
    • Base part: wide and long.
    • Roof piece: wide and long.
    • Back: wide and long.
  3. Cut a diameter hole in the front panel. Attach a spade piece or a dull piece to the drill and make a pencil mark about 1/3 of the way down on the front panel. Use the drill bit on the drill to carve a wide hole forward so that birds can enter the box.[3]
    • This hole may seem small, but it allows smaller birds to enter the box while keeping large birds of prey out.
    • If you want to attract larger birds, leave the front panel completely from the box to make it more accessible.
  4. Drill 5 small holes in the base piece. Use the same dull piece and make 5 markings evenly distributed along the base piece. Then use your dull piece to make five wide holes so that water and waste run out of the box.[4]
    • These drainage / ventilation holes keep the box cleaner so that the birds are more likely to stay for a long time. It will also ensure that the birds have enough air to breathe while in the box.

[[[[Edit]Assembly of the box

  1. Nail the sides to the bottom of the baking sheet. Start by assembling the side pieces so that the flat edges are flush with the bottom of the back plate and that the tops of the side pieces are tilted downwards. Use two nails on each side to attach the side pieces to the sides of the baking sheet and leave approximately space at the top of the baking sheet.[5]
    • Leaving the space at the top gives you space to attach the ceiling.
  2. Attach the base to the back plate so that it is flush with the sides. Grasp your base plate with the holes in it and place it in line with the bottom of the back plate and the bottom of the side pieces. Use four nails to hammer the base pieces into place against the back plate and the side pieces.[6]
    • The base piece must be really secure because that’s what the birds will actually be sitting on in the box.
  3. Align the front panel with the sides and then secure it with nails. Grasp the front piece and place it on the side panels so that the hole in the front is close to the top of the box. Use 3 nails on each side of the front piece to attach it to the side panels, then use two nails to attach the front piece to the base piece.[7]
  4. Attach a rubber hinge to the roof and base. Take a strip of rubber that is wide and long. Use two nails to attach the top of the strip to the top of the back plate. Then attach the top of the roof to the edge of the rubber hinge with 2 more nails.[8]
    • The roof should rest on top of the two side panels to remain closed.
    • Attaching the roof with hinges rather than nails makes it easier to clean and maintain the drawer over time.
  5. Paint or decorate the box if you want. If you want to decorate your bird box, you can take a brush and use non-toxic, water-based paint to use on the outside of the box. Let the box dry completely for about 1 day before hanging it outside.[9]
    • Painting the box can make it easier to see, and it can make it a cute attraction in your garden.

[[[[Edit]Hang and clean the drawer

  1. Set up your bird box between February and March. If you are in the southern part of the country, put up your box by the end of February. If you are in the northern part of the country, post it before the end of March.[10]
    Make a bird box step 10.jpg
    • This gives the birds in your area plenty of time to use the box during the breeding season.
    • It can take a few years for birds to find your box, so do not be put off if it does not get used to it immediately.
  2. Drill a hole in the back plate for hanging. Use a drill bit to create a hole at the top of the back plate. This makes it much easier to hang the box later so that the screw does not have as much wood to push through.[11]
    • You may need to push a little through the rubber hinge, which is good.
  3. Mount the box at least above the ground. Choose a tree or pole in your garden that is in direct sunlight to hang your bird box. Grab a screw and use the drill to attach the top of the bird box to the tree or pole. Make sure it is really sturdy so that the birds can easily go in and out.[12]
    • Putting the bird box high up will protect the birds from predators on the ground.
    • You do not need to add any nesting material to your box, as the birds bring in their own.
  4. Wash your bird box every October or November. After each breeding season, remove your box from the bracket and dump nesting material or debris inside it. Use boiling water to clean and disinfect the inside and then let it dry before hanging it up again.[13]
    • Never use harsh chemicals to clean your bird box, otherwise you may harm the birds.
    • If you open the box and find unpatched eggs, leave them in the box. According to the animal law, the eggs can only be removed from October to January and they must be destroyed – it is illegal to keep the eggs.


  • When birds start using your bird box, try to keep your distance so that they are not frightened.[14]


  • Many bird species are very territorial and do not nest in boxes if they are too close to each other.[15]

[[[[Edit]Things you need

  • thick and long pine, cedar or plywood
  • Saw
  • Measuring tape
  • Pen
  • Drill
  • Boring or spade bit
  • drill
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Screw

[[[[Edit]Related wikiHows

  • Make popcorn balls for birds
  • Bird-watching
  • Take care of a budgerigar
  • Clean a birdcage
  • Create a bird’s nest


  1. https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/actions/how-build-nesting-box-birds
  2. https://www.rspb.org.uk/fun-and-learning/for-families/family-wild-challenge/activities/build-a-birdbox/
  3. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMW01FF8Wo0&feature=youtu.be&t=59
  4. https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/actions/how-build-nesting-box-birds
  5. https://www.rspb.org.uk/fun-and-learning/for-families/family-wild-challenge/activities/build-a-birdbox/
  6. https://www.nwf.org/Garden-for-Wildlife/Young/Nesting-Box
  7. https://www.rspb.org.uk/fun-and-learning/for-families/family-wild-challenge/activities/build-a-birdbox/
  8. https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/actions/how-build-nesting-box-birds
  9. https://www.rspb.org.uk/fun-and-learning/for-families/family-wild-challenge/activities/build-a-birdbox/
  10. https://www.nwf.org/Garden-for-Wildlife/Young/Nesting-Box
  11. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cMW01FF8Wo0&feature=youtu.be&t=110
  12. https://www.nwf.org/Garden-for-Wildlife/Young/Nesting-Box
  13. https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/actions/how-build-nesting-box-birds
  14. https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/actions/how-build-nesting-box-birds
  15. https://www.wildlifetrusts.org/actions/how-build-nesting-box-birds

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