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Bird Houses & Nesting Box Woodworking Plan: Red-headed Woodpeckers


Choosing and Setting up Nest Boxes … Feeding HummingbirdsFeeding Wild Birds

The Nestbox for Red-headed Woodpeckers, Golden-fronted Woodpeckers and Hawk Owls is constructed with Red Cedar. Wood stock is rough-cut on both sides so birds can grip interior and exterior surfaces.

It has a 6″ by 6″ floor, 14″ inside ceiling, 2″ diameter entrance hole located 11″ above the floor.

When constructing the box make sure to create ventilation openings are in the floor and under the roof . Although some experts disagree with the notion that ventilation openings are needed at all. Please refer to this article for further information. This may also depend on location of nest box, exposure to direct sun as well as material used to build the nest box.

A hinged roof facilitates easy access for monitoring and cleaning. Assemble the box with corrosion resistant screws.

Fill the box to the top with wood shavings or animal bedding purchased at the pet store. Please note that fine sawdust is not recommended as it remains damp, can become moldy and is difficult for the birds to work with. Packing the nestbox with wood shavings / chips will also discourage starlings and sparrows from nesting in the box, and the process of excavating the nestbox (or any cavity) is a natural part of a woodpecker’s mating behavior.

Locate in a woodland edge or clearing. Mount at least ten feet high. Leave some wood chips on the floor. Birdhouses mounted out of reach should be installed by professionals.

Remove the nest box in late summer or fall after the brood rearing seasons are over. Clean thoroughly and repair for the next season.


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Gordon Ramel

Gordon is an ecologist with two degrees from Exeter University. He's also a teacher, a poet and the owner of 1,152 books. Oh - and he wrote this website.

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