Gardening for Butterflies, Birds and Bees forum: When do you hang your birdhouses?

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Name: Jai or Jack
WV (Zone 6b)
Om shanti om.
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Jai_Ganesha
Dec 23, 2016 2:38 AM CST
I've heard to hang new birdhouses in late winter so that the earliest migrating birds can scope them out. That's what I'm planning to do this year. Just curious what other people do, and why.
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Name: June
Rosemont, Ont. (Zone 4a)
Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge) Beavers Region: Canadian Dragonflies Butterflies Cactus and Succulents
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JuneOntario
Dec 23, 2016 3:33 PM CST
The bird houses that my DH provides for bluebirds are permanent, attached to posts. He cleans them out in early spring, just before the bluebirds arrive. He often finds mouse nests in the boxes. You may find that if you hang bird houses in winter, mice will make homes in them.
Name: Jai or Jack
WV (Zone 6b)
Om shanti om.
Container Gardener Multi-Region Gardener Garden Photography Amaryllis Zinnias Gardens in Buckets
Region: Pennsylvania Annuals Houseplants Plant and/or Seed Trader Birds Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Jai_Ganesha
Dec 24, 2016 1:22 AM CST
I love mice.
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Name: UrbanWild
Kentucky (Zone 6b)
Kentucky - borderline of 6a & 6b
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UrbanWild
Jan 18, 2017 9:24 AM CST
I started last week...

I really want chickadees, wrens, titmice, etc. There is a house wren I noticed from calls last fall. Put up a feeder that looks like a bird house with glass sides for dried mealworms. Placed under a porch at about 6 feet from ground. Have seen the wren every day since last week. Hasn't really frequented it or the other feeders though. Anyway, I created a shelf at about 7 feet level under the porch. Will place another 8 foot long shelf under other side today. Porch floor joists make it appear as compartments. Perfect for house wrens or Carolina wrens. Additionally, will do same under back deck. Last week I hung 3 houses but much higher. Would LOVE chickadees. I hear them all the time but have yet to see them at the feeders. As my userid implies, I am in an older urban neighboorhood with lots of trees, etc.

BTW, as I am trying to excluse non-native house sparrows and starlings, I am using restricted sized holes on the boxes. We have kestrels here and would consider a box on North side of house way up on fire escape just under 3rd floor if I thought it would work. Don't want a glorified starling box though. Have heard squirrels will enlargebhokes as well. Love my squirrels ( bulb theft notwithstanding). Would love to do same for screech owls but have yet to hear one anywhere nearby.

I mentioned hole size above. The only one I am concerned about is the hole size for titmice seems to be large enough for house sparrows. Has anyone had titmice in a box? Comments?

BTW, recomendations for house wren boxes are 5-10 feet from ground. We do have raccoons and opossums, so I wonder if there is a safe way to do this?
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Name: Jai or Jack
WV (Zone 6b)
Om shanti om.
Container Gardener Multi-Region Gardener Garden Photography Amaryllis Zinnias Gardens in Buckets
Region: Pennsylvania Annuals Houseplants Plant and/or Seed Trader Birds Garden Ideas: Level 1
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Jai_Ganesha
Jan 19, 2017 10:33 PM CST
UrbanWild said:BTW, recomendations for house wren boxes are 5-10 feet from ground. We do have raccoons and opossums, so I wonder if there is a safe way to do this?


Squirrel baffles usually work. But it depends on what is nearby. If the birdhouse is in an open field with no trees or structures nearby the raccoons can't jump 10 feet vertically to reach the house. If there's something nearby though they can. Snakes can jump in the same way, believe it or not. So for any baffle to work it has to be placed on a house that's away from other structures.
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California, San Joaquin valley (Zone 9b)
RenaeC
Jan 29, 2017 6:30 PM CST
The birds in this part of California don't really leave. There's a park they all go to and there's lots of visitors that come by and feed them, so they just all stay there all throughout the winter. It's really nice because there's various ducks, swans, peacock's, and other tropical birds, but it's the geese you have to be careful of, they are mean and they won't hesitate to chase you down if they see you have food, or if you get too close to them, or if you're close to one of their hidden nests. They will attack you. Even if you are on the water in a boat they will attack.

For the little common birds and crows they sometimes leave, but we once had some little birds that decided to nest in our trees and they would attack our dogs and steal their food, so eventually we had to put up tarps to block them from getting our dogs and their food when they were outside. I would suggest late winter, early spring when things start to warm up in your area cause they will be hungry when theyve migrated back in your area. It is a long journey for them. Good luck!

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