When birdhouses started coming out as a yard ornament of style I was glad. Until I realized many of them were not meant to actually be used by birds. The fancier houses with pretty colours and accessories will keep the birds away. Birds don’t trust birdhouses with a lot of extra trimmings and odd smells.
Wooden houses are best as the wood is able to breathe. However the wood inside the birdhouse should not be chemically treated as this could harm the birds. Make sure any birdhouse you use has ventilation to let in air and light and yet not so many access holes that predators can get in. Also, a birdhouse needs enough space inside for the growing family along with their nest. Different types of birds have different requirements for space and colours which attract them. Building (or even buying) a practical birdhouse is an art.
The North American native people are credited with starting birdhouses in North America. They created birdhouses out of gourds for martins to protect their drying meat and corn crops. They attracted the birds to be scarecrows.
This Flickr group for Old Birdhouses is my favourite link of those I found for birdhouses. I already love seeing and exploring old buildings, I never thought to look for a group about old birdhouses. I’ve seen a few during my explorations. Although, a farm or other property can be a abandoned, the birdhouses are more likely to be in use by birds when there are seldom any people around. So I can’t really think of birdhouses as abandoned, just aged and weathered.
For the bird lovers:
- Flickr: Birdhouses and Birdfeeders
- About: Birding and Wild Birds
- Audubon Christmas Bird Count
- Wild Bird Watching
- Google Groups: alt.birdwatching
- Chatterbirds – Birdwatching Community
For the arts and crafts lovers:
- Flickr: Ornamental Birdhouses and Feeders
- Flickr: Altered Birdhouses
- Flickr: Birdhouse Artists
- Etsy: Birdhouse Blessings
- Etsy: ArtyBeccaStash
- Etsy: Creations by KarenH
- Etsy: A Country Way
- Etsy: Julieanna’s Creations
- ArtFire: Joysmoon
- ArtFire: Brunswick Birdhouse Creations
- ArtFire: Pals Creations
Wild Birds Forever has a pretty cool bird feeder. It’s not a birdhouse but I love the idea of leaving fruit out for the birds in this way. Much simpler than a lot of feeders I have seen and very easy to keep it clean and restocked.