how to set up a bird house

When it is time to put up a birdhouse, whether you are putting up a new house for the first time or repositioning an old house, understanding how to best hang the house will make it more attractive to nesting birds. Properly mounted birdhouses are also easier to monitor and care for, ensuring plenty of birding excitement for many nesting seasons to come.

2. Select a low-traffic area

Sorry, but nesting birds prefer to be in areas free of people and predators. The quieter, calmer and lower-traffic the area, the better. When deciding where to put your birdhouse, please take some time to survey your outdoor space.

Do you frequently pass by that spot? Does the gardener cut that tree every week? Does your Goldendoodle use up his energy playing fetch nearby? These are all good reasons to pass on a particular spot—you’re not just setting up some décor! For birds that genuinely need it, you are building a real habitat.

Of course, if you want to draw in particular bird species, you’ll need to do some research. Purple martins and bluebirds, for example, dont mind exposure. However, most birds do favor a quiet area away from the hustle and bustle.

More tips: Avoid clustering birdhouses together. The majority of flying birds would rather build their nests far from other birds.

1. Keep bird houses away from bird feeders, baths

Generally speaking, you should locate your birdhouse far from any other bird bath or feeder on your property. Offering the birds a resort-style area with all these conveniences in one location might seem adorable, but it merely raises the possibility of predators entering their home. Please ensure that baths, feeders, and bird houses are spaced fairly apart.

Need exact instructions? Some sources say a whopping thirty feet, while others suggest six or seven feet. of distance is best. The more distance you can give, the better.

Factors to Consider When Mounting a Birdhouse

Many birdwatchers go to great lengths to choose a birdhouse that is appropriate in terms of size, features, and color for their preferred cavity-nesting species. Nevertheless, if the house is not mounted correctly, not even the best one will draw birds. When preparing to hang a birdhouse, there are several things to take into account, such as:

  • Mounting Mechanism: The security and safety of the house are influenced by how it is mounted. A lot of birdhouses are made to be fixed to a tree, structure, or pole so that birds can use them comfortably and steadily. Certain designs can also be suspended using chains, wires, ropes, or hooks. While some species of birds will avoid less stable homes, others don’t mind a little swinging. Before erecting the house, find out which mounting method your backyard birds prefer for safety.
  • Location: The house should ideally be in a quiet area away from bird baths or feeders where there may be a lot of activity that could frighten away doting parents. A birdhouse can be more effectively camouflaged by placing it in a more hidden spot, and mature birds will have a good place to watch over their young by perching on nearby branches. But some birds do favor birdhouses in more open spaces, like purple martins and bluebirds.
  • Height: Depending on the species, different heights are preferred for nest-building (see list below). Although higher houses that aren’t tied to trees or climbable posts are typically safer from savanna cats and other similar predators, they can be more challenging to install, maintain, and keep an eye on. The house must be mounted safely and securely above all else, even though the height may not be optimal or convenient for birdwatchers.
  • Climate: Mounting a birdhouse in a sheltered spot is ideal in areas with heavy rainfall, but in extremely hot climates, a cooler, shaded spot is crucial. To help shield fragile hatchlings from chilly breezes or wind-driven rain, the entrance hole should always be facing away from the direction of the prevailing winds.
  • Safety: The house should be strong and unable to wobble, slip, or fall, no matter where it is mounted. Predators like raccoons, rats, and snakes can be discouraged by placing baffles above and below the house, and the birdhouse itself should be made of safe materials.
  • Monitoring and Cleaning: Birders need to be able to access the house on a regular basis to ensure proper cleaning and, if desired, to keep an eye on any hatchlings, regardless of the species of birds that will be using it. Install the house where stable, level ground is available if a stool or ladder is needed to get to it.
  • Other Houses: When rearing a family, even gregarious and social birds require privacy to feel safe. Generally speaking, there should be no more than four birdhouses per acre at a time, with the exception of colonial species’ residences like purple martins. Even if not every house is used at once, mounting multiple houses will increase the chances of birds nesting in the yard and give them more options for selecting their preferred location.


Where is the best place to put up a bird house?

Height from the ground should be about 3 metres — small-hole boxes are best placed 1-3m above ground on tree trunks, but avoid sites where foliage obscures the entrance hole – a clear flight path is important. If there are no trees in your garden, the next best option is to place your box on the side of a shed or wall.

Where not to put a bird house?

Whenever possible, avoid hanging birdhouses from trees or buildings. Instead, attach them to metal poles, which are much easier to put predator guards (baffles) around. Raccoons, squirrels, and cats will raid nest boxes if they are allowed the opportunity.

Which direction should a birdhouse face?

First, it is recommended that the birdhouse faces the opposite direction from our prevailing winds. This means, as much as practical, birdhouses should face a northeasterly direction. The height where you place bird boxes should be at least five feet off the ground.