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Backyard Bird Shelters

Backyard Bird Shelters

Backyard bird shelters are like tiny guest homes for the birds that frequent your backyard during all times of the year. I remember even as a kid when I built my first bird shelter in art class at school. It was nothing special, just the typical few pieces of wood nailed together to look like a small home with a hole for the bird to squeeze in and out to rest and get away from bad weather.  Like other animals birds require food, water, and shelter for living and survival.  However, it doesn’t require a few pieces of wood nailed to together to provide adequate shelter for birds. You can use items in your backyard or you can create an environment in which the birds can build and shelter themselves. Follow this article to learn more about creating your own backyard bird shelters.

There are two types of shelter distinctions: artificial and natural. Artificial is like what I made as a kid for my backyard.  Artificial shelters include, birdhouses, buildings such as decks and sheds, and roost boxes, which are great shelters for winter birds. You can pick up a variety of different birdhouses at your local hardware store. A lot of shelters are also meant for specific species and come in all shapes and sizes to not only provide quality shelter, but also to improve the appearance of your backyard.  If you have a deck, many small bird species will find shelter underneath or in the crevices of its structure. Natural shelters include trees, shrubs, tall grasses, and tree cavities. These are shelters that are pre-existing around your backyard landscape.  You can also compile broken branches and brush to create a natural shelter for any ground dwelling species. Natural shelters are also great supplements to any artificial shelter you have already set up in your backyard. Once you have the shelters set up, you have to figure out a way to attract birds to live in them. A housing contractor doesn’t build homes for people to just look at.  Scan your backyard, and think strategically about where to place shelters and where to set up brush piles.  Birds are attracted to convenience and variety. Make sure there’s plenty of shelter space for the birds and that they are not located too far from the feeders or water baths. Opt for native plants as often as possible and try to look for shelters that server double duty as both a home and a food source such as fruit trees.  By providing good shelter through a variety of approaches, it is possible to attract a wide range of birds that will feel safe and comfortable in your backyard.

Review your backyard this season and assess what needs improving. Maybe you already have all the tools, but they’re just not in the right place. Don’t hesitate to speak with someone at your local bird supply or hardware store for further advice on how to maximize the number of birds in your backyard. 

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