Bird nesting box on balcony

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mclovine
mclovine's picture
Bird nesting box on balcony

Hi,

I want to put up a nesting box this spring and would like some advice.

I'm in suburban Sydney and some of the neighborhood birds are:

raven, magpie, yellow-crest cockatoo, laughing kookaburra

I'm on the 3rd floor and plan to attach the box to one of the balcony rails/columns.

Do you think this is worth attempting - attract local species vs non-natives such as mynas/doves? Is there a specie you would recommend? And any general advice also appreciated.

Thank you

Woko
Woko's picture

What an interesting idea, mclovine! I think it's well worth trying. You might also want to discreetly photograph & document what happens & share your results with your fellow apartment dwellers: they might catch the bug. 

Ravens & Magpies won't be attracted to any sort of nest box (unless they nest on top of it) since they don't use hollows. Sulphur-crested Cockatoos, Galahs, Corellas, Rosellas & Lorikeets will be attracted to nest boxes which are reasonably deep. Kookaburras prefer horizontal nest boxes with a reasonable amount of space. If you have pardalotes in your area try a very small, horizontal nest box with a very small entrance hole. 

Have on hand a long device with a hook, similar to a 3-pronged hoe, with which you can remove an nesting material of feral birds like the Common Mynah, Starling & House Sparrow. You might even try a hinged floor to a perpendicular nest box so that you can swing it down to disrupt feral bird nesting. 

You might also want to Google bird nesting boxes to get a better idea of dimensions & any other factors which would enhance breeding. 

Also, be preparet for non-birds such as possums & bats to use your nesting box. They, too, need opportunities to breed. 

Other Birds in Backyarders may have other ideas. And do report your findings because so many nesting hollows have been destroyed by human "progress".

mclovine
mclovine's picture

Hi Woko,

Thanks so much for your detailed response:

 'Sulphur-crested Cockatoos, Galahs, Corellas, Rosellas & Lorikeets will be attracted to nest boxes which are reasonably deep... If you have pardalotes in your area try a very small, horizontal nest box with a very small entrance hole.'

I will keep an eye out for the smaller birds and find the appropriate box, hopefully it'll bring some visitors!

dwatsonbb
dwatsonbb's picture

I like your thinking, but it might be prudent to seek advice from your body corporate or landlord. You may also have to consider other residents, particularly below your level, as birds tend to make a bit of a poopy mess. Not trying to discourage you, but best to do your homework before upsetting the "natives".

I think I would be avoiding Sulphur-crested Cockatoos, as they can be very demanding and quite destructive.

Dale Huonville, Tasmania

mclovine
mclovine's picture

Hi dwatsonbb,

Thank you will keep that in mind, definitely don't want to cause any problems for other residents. I'll do more research on smaller nesting boxes with a small entrance, to avoid attracting larger/louder/aggressive birds. 

And agree on sulphur-crested cockatoos, a few of them ate up my pot plants before - hopefully they won't be attracted to a smaller nest box?

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