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Backyard Birdhouses

by Francine Huff, All About Lawns Columnist

Fall is a good time to put birdhouses in your backyard. It's just before the breeding season for many birds and can give them time to get accustomed to their new home. Whether you design and build your own or purchase a premade birdhouse, here's what you need to know.

Birdhouses: Choose a Good Location

When choosing locations for backyard birdhouses it's important to think about the types of species who might be attracted to them. Some birds may be more attracted to wooded or shady areas while others may like more open, grassy areas. Most birds are attracted to light so your backyard design should incorporate houses in areas with a lot of sun. It's also important to look at what type of habitat will surround a box.

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Birdhouses Should Avoid Predators

Place birdhouses about 5 feet to 30 feet from the ground so that predators won't have access. Mounting backyard birdhouses on metal poles or PVC pipes can help keep predators from climbing up. It's not a good idea to put birdhouses on the sides of trees because squirrels and cats may climb into them. There should be at least 25 feet between individual birdhouses to avoid any territorial issues among birds. The houses should be secured so that they don't swing in the wind.

Leaving backyard birdhouses up year round can allow migratory birds to take shelter in them during the winter. However, boxes can be taken down after the nesting season for cleaning. When putting up backyard birdhouses it's important to avoid areas where herbicides and pesticides are used.

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About the Author
Francine L. Huff is a freelance journalist and the author of The 25-Day Money Makeover for Women. She has appeared on a variety of TV and radio shows.



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