New to making a bird friendly backyard - need advice on next box

4 posts / 0 new
Last post
Emma Crawford's picture
New to making a bird friendly backyard - need advice on next box


im new to all of this - and really enjoying learning more about our local Birdlife.

my 2.5year old daughter is very interested in birds and has asked if we can put up a nest box in our back yard... I've been reading the resources - and first, we'll work on making our garden much more bird-friendly - then we'll make a nest box.

but I need some help figuring out what sort of bird to make the nest box for... 

our yard is medium sized, we don't have a lot of trees (the neighbours have silky oaks, lily pillows, there are some eucalyptus and other trees in the suburb - but in our yard we only have an old 3m tall tree trunk which has ivy growing over it - no other trees).

we live near a small pocket of bush land in Brisbane, and have a brook that runs close by. 

Looking out from our deck, we have seen kookaburras, myner birds, crows, magpies, lorikeets, some different types of parrots, Bircher birds, and green fig eaters...

and we have possums, bats, mice (in the garage - eek! I think!), and lizards (probably some snakes too) hanging around.

I'm also keen to build a nest box for a bird that will be likely to use the box - as having a bird use it would be very satisfying for my daughter (though I think she'll really just enjoy the process too!)

does anyone have any suggestions as to what sort of bird we should start thinking about building a nest box for?



Alex Rogers
Alex Rogers's picture

Hi Emma - welcome to the site :-) 

I'm no expert in either bird boxes or your location, so I'll leave it to those who know more - but I think its a great idea for a fun and useful project. Enjoy!

Woko's picture

Hi there emma. 

You might need to do some research on which hollow-using birds in your area are most threatened & go from there. Not being familiar with Brisbane's bird life I can't help you there but you could do some Googling, consult with council's environment officer or contact the Queensland Department of Environment or whatever it's called. 

Another approach which, I suggest, is quite realistic, is to regard all native birds as threatened & build a nest box which would attract any large species which your daughter can easily see. A nest box for Kookaburras might be the go since I rarely, if ever, see suitable nest boxes for that species. 

One consideration might be the presence of existing tree hollows in your area & whether they're used by species which might compete for nesting with whatever species you decide to attract. Putting that rather vague statement another way: be wary of increasing the density of breeding places which might create competition for other resources, espcially food for young birds.

And that's a consideration, too. Breeding success will be enhanced if you have natural habitat to provide the food that both young & adult birds can exploit. Your brief description of your local habitat & some of the creatures in it suggests that it might well sustain the breeding of a range of hollow-using bird species.

All the very best, emma, & good on you for involving your daughter in your enterprise. 

Emma Crawford's picture

Thanks for your encouragement Alex and woko 

- and for all the info, ideas and considerations too Woko - that's a great help!! I think a kookaburra nest box might be the way to go - but I'll check with the council environmental office too. 

I'll keep you posted how we go!! Thanks again for your help!


 and   @birdsinbackyards
                 Subscribe to me on YouTube