If you want or already have a wildlife habitat in your backyard then one of the things that you’re going to need are places of shelter for the animals and birds that pass through. Wildlife will need a home before winter sets in and in the spring they need a place to keep their young. You may be thinking of a birdhouse but ironically birds don’t actually live in birdhouses. Most birds in North America are “cavity nesters” they build a nest in a box raise their young and move from the box. They generally only stick around for a month or so. If you want to create some nesting boxes for your backyard habitat then read on.
What is a Cavity Nester?
Cavity nesters are just birds that don’t build their nests anywhere or in open spaces. Their nests are far too fragile to just sit on a roof or branch they need the walls of a box or a hole in a tree that will help hold the nests together. Some birds like a woodpecker don’t even build nests they put their eggs in wood chips from a nesting hole. In the wild there are plenty of dead trees around for birds to use to build their nests but in an urban setting dead trees are often removed or cut down. Here is a look at what you need for a nesting box.
Destroying Their Habitat
Because of urban sprawl there are no more dead trees in city settings, these trees provided insects for woodpeckers. Woodpeckers created nesting spots for other bird from the holes they made. Dead trees provide a natural habitat for birds, insects and animals. With fewer if any dead trees the onus is on us to replace the natural nesting spots of birds. That is where nesting boxes come in. You can easily add nesting boxes to even the smallest of yards and have different birds building nests there year after year.
If you plan on putting a couple of nesting boxes in your yard then you can either make them yourself or buy them from a store. Making nesting boxes is a great project to do with your kids to get them interested in wildlife conservation. You will want to put the boxes out in the yard in the winter and it will be there when the birds return in the spring.