Wooden nesting boxes for nesting birds...

  Aitchbee 19:16 25 Jan 2012

...I bought 4 of them today from Lidl...the ones with a little hole at the front, just bigger than a 2p piece.

Can I fix all of them to a big tree (twin-trunked), which is ideally situated at the back of my flat?

I have read the instructions, but was just wondering if the birds would mind their potential homes (nests) being close to each other.

  Condom 19:31 25 Jan 2012

Very good question AitchBEE and one I have wondered about myself. I have two of them quite close together and I find that only one is ever occupied at a particulr time by either Blue or Great Tits. It used to be just Blue Tits but the last two years Great Tits have also moved in as the opening has got slightly bigger over time. I have never had both occupied at the same time but whether this is because of territorial rights I have no idea as they are normally quite friendly birds. I know you will only get 1 Robin to a garden as they will fight to the death to keep it that way.

  Aitchbee 19:58 25 Jan 2012

Thanks Condom, tomoro I will fix two of them (the nesting boxes) to the big tree (twin-trunked), they will be about 2 metres apart, one on each trunk, about 3 metres from the ground. I can fix the other two boxes onto smaller trees which are not ideal for viewing from my window...but the bird tennents will like the privacy!

  jellyhead 20:30 25 Jan 2012

Some advice nest boxes may help

  Aitchbee 20:46 25 Jan 2012

Thanks jellyhead...great link. It might take a bird-brain, (who said me?) to think like a bird!

  spuds 00:02 26 Jan 2012

Try to spread them about, because birds tend to have their own territories. Also check the hole size, if you have particular birds in mind.

We have blue tits that use our boxes every year, and a couple of years ago, we found one of the adults plus the young dead on the ground. Asking the RSPB about this, they didn't seem to have an answer, but we later found out, that the bird box hole was large enough for a house sparrow to gain access. We believe that an house sparrow had perhaps caused the deaths. Closing the holes on the boxes slightly, resolved the problem for the next years.

If you do an internet search or check your local library for a book on the subject, you should find the size of the holes, that will attract certain birds. Also check to see if the boxes can be dismantled, because they may need cleaning and checking inside, after a brood as left!.

As you have mentioned Lidl, Aldi have been selling bird boxes, bird food and the like recently, including bird boxes with a camera installed for observation purposes.

  mrwoowoo 03:31 26 Jan 2012

I have 2 boxes on my shed which are 8 ft apart and only one ever gets used by blue tits each year. I never got any birds to nest until i faced my box due east. I believe this is because there is more chance of having the ideal temperature catching the early and late morning sun. Facing north would be too cold, and facing south would cause the young birds to die of heat exhaustion on a hot day. I've certainly got a lot of enjoyment from my boxes, especially when you get to see the young emerge for the first time.

  chub_tor 10:27 26 Jan 2012

Some years ago our next door neighbour gave us a blue tit bird box and we have tried many different positions in the garden for it. Although we have had many bird visitors none have ever made a nest. We also have a wooden mail box with a slate lid and a hinged back that due to my DIY skills has never hung straight down but leaves a gap of around half an inch that varies as the wind swirls around. To stop it flapping in the breeze we use one of the postie's elastic bands that at spring time last year rotted through. We returned from a short break to discover blue tits nesting in the mail box. With the small gap we were intrigued as to how they got in so watched them carefully and saw that they perched on the wire fence alongside then nudged the flap gently with beak and head to wriggle their way in.

We were concerned about how hot the box got as it is fully exposed to the sun and the entrance flap faces south but then we discovered that the birds just pushed masses of moss (our 'lawn' is more moss than grass) into the gap to increase ventilation.

Nine babies hatched and fledged last year and the postie has insisted that we allow them to nest again this year should they want to, in fact he wants us to install a webcam so that he can see what is going on inside our mail box. Any suggestions for a wireless webcam would be appreciated.

  Graham* 12:34 26 Jan 2012

One disadvantage of bird boxes on trees is they provide easy access to cats. Cats will spot any activity and lie in wait ready to pounce.

  Aitchbee 18:48 25 Feb 2012

I've heard the beautiful song(s) of a blackbird for about a month...it's always about this time 6:30pm and also about 4:00am...at the back of my house.

Is it the male?

Does it move on to other spots and repeat its warble?

I can't see it because it's dark.

  muddypaws 19:52 25 Feb 2012


You probably have all the info you need already, but hole sizes obviously determine the type of bird. Anything larger than 25mm (blue tits) could allow other birds in and scare away the tits. It's easy to stick another piece of wood with a 25mm over the existing. Sorry if I have duplicated previous info.

Holes 25mm - Blue Tit & Coal Tit. 28mm & 30mm - Blue Tit, Coal Tit & Great Tit. 32mm - Blue Tit, Coal Tit, Great Tit, House Sparrow & Nuthatch. Open Front?

Good for Robins, Wrens & Spotted Flycatcher Position

Place about 5 - 10 feet off the ground, brass nail or screw to fix to tree trunk facing between NE & SE (out of the worst weather), under cover of branches in a tree or Ivy leaves. Just to shelter from midday sun, winds from the West and heavy rain.

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