Durable vinyl, like the kind used in housing construction, is know to last a lifetime. It doesn’t weather, fade, warp or crack. Newer vinyl birdhouses are crafted with meticulous attention to detail, so much so that a customer from Cape May, NJ had called to tell me he’d received a wooden birdhouse instead! I was taken aback for a moment, thinking “these birdhouses only come in vinyl”. After assuring him these were not wood birdhouses, I asked him to knock on it and listen carefully. Finally he was convinced it was vinyl.
Another customer in Fayetteville, AR, told me her horror story of two large wood birdhouses she’d ordered, costing $300 each – which had not even survived the first year! She could not recall where she’d ordered them and did not know the manufacturer. Personally…I’d be fuming! Whole-heartedly and with confidence, I assured her these birdhouses would last a lifetime. She took a chance and ordered two of the vinyl birdhouses. She was truly thrilled with her purchase and thanked me profusely! Two weeks later she bought another one of these vinyl beauties… they really do look like wood birdhouses, are worth every penny, and certainly made to last a lifetime!
Providing birds critical roosting and nesting sites to raise their young can be anything but a boring wood nest box. Decorative bird houses abound out there in birdie retail land, with so many fun designs and shapes it’s hard to choose!
But there are some things to be aware of when choosing decorative bird houses. Wood is always a natural choice, but will it go the distance? How many seasons might it last? If it’s made in China, your chances for many seasons of successful broods may be slim. Hand crafted wood houses that are made in the USA have a far better chance at surviving over the years.
Ceramics and stoneware are sturdy materials that won’t break down over time. There are some great artists creating wonderful pieces of functional art like decorative bird houses. As long as the house is equipped with adequate ventilation and proper drainage it’s a good choice. The entrance must be correctly and proportionally-sized for the birds you’d like to attract as well. Adding some nesting material nearby will also encourage birds to take up residence in your yard. And as always, a fresh water water source will entice more feathered friends than any house or feeder alone…. Happy Birding!
It’s been a warm few days, but likely just a teaser. The dreaded cold snap will hit again-damaging all tender vegetation. But resident wild birds are pretty well-adapted to these kinds of weather changes. Help them thrive by providing proper nesting sites, a very scarce commodity.
Unique birdhouses that are totally fun and functional, with ventilation, drainage and clean-outs help provide these critical nest sites birds so desperately need. Competition for bird houses from non-native species has taken it’s toll on our own cavity-dwelling birds. European Starlings and English House Sparrows are wicked in their destruction of Bluebird and Purple Martin eggs.
Got someone on your list who’s due for a gift? Unique birdhouses make long-lasting and practical gifts to be enjoyed for many seasons. Putting a smile on your friend’s face while helping wild birds to thrive and flourish… what better gift for any nature enthusiast?
Goldfinches and a Purple Finch share this tube bird feeder in harmony. Only seconds later, this juvenile Blue Jay stopped by for a bite to eat too.
Pretty nondescript, it’s your basic tube model. But there are some really cool tube bird feeders hand crafted by artisans, in ceramics and stoneware. The natural-themes in fun designs and sometimes vivid colors can tend to add a great focal point in the garden or landscape.
I just don’t get it sometimes, because every year I promise myself to install seed catchers underneath my feeders, and every year I just clean up the mess below instead! For someone who does the backyard birding thing to the degree of overkill, you’d think these seed catchers would already be in place? Right now there are three heated birdbaths, ten in all! Feeding sunflower, thistle, suet, finch mix, live mealworms, peanuts, and oh…let’s not forget the squirrels! In summer we have two water wigglers, 2 misters and two birdbath drippers going too. By the way, the birds and butterflies really love the leaf misters!
Beside the unsightly mess below feeders, old seed becomes molded and poses a health hazard to the immediate bird population. Spreading fungus and airborne diseases is never good.The added platform space from a seed catcher virtually creates an additional feeder for birds who may not perch at the main feeder.