The joke from the IFC series <em>Portlandia</em>, a comedy that lampoons the bohemian lifestyle of the Pacific Northwest, is that “[i]n Portland, you can put a bird on something and just call it art.”
At ATGStores.com, we use the reference as a reminder that a <a href="http://www.atgstores.com/bird-houses_1154.html?linkLoc=topnav" target="_blank">bird house</a> should certainly be artful in whatever way pleases the beholder, but not at the expense of its utility. In other words, what good is a beautiful bird house if birds don’t want to live in it?
The assumption is that a box with a hole in it sitting atop a pole or hanging from a branch is good enough. And, why shouldn’t it be, right? Uppity, <em>bourgeois</em> birds that are too good for your bird house can go fly a kite … or whatever.
As satisfying as bird spite may be, though, it’s not really the answer. Birds have no taste. They only have needs, all of which are driven by biological instinct. The good news is that birds do care what your bird house looks like – the bad news is that it’s got very little to do with the 26 hours you spent whittling your family crest into the pediment, or the 40 hours you spent giving your bird house a pediment.
“Common cavity dwellers” like <a title="Wren Bird Houses" href="http://www.atgstores.com/wren-bird-houses_1154.html?&option0=optionA=201627|13194~Valu" target="_blank">wrens</a>, <a title="Nuthatch Birdhouses" href="http://www.atgstores.com/nuthatch-bird-houses_1154.html?&option0=optionA=201629|13194~Valu" target="_blank">nuthatches</a> and other birds all seek a few standard amenities in their accommodations. Your bird house should:
- Be made of wood, as it most closely resembles the trees in which birds would normally nest
- Remain unpainted on the inside, because trees aren’t painted on the inside, either
- Have 1 1/4 inch holes for the birds; <a title="Bluebird Bird Houses" href="http://www.atgstores.com/bluebird-bird-houses_1154.html?&option0=optionA=201626|13194~Valu" target="_blank">bluebirds</a> and other larger birds need larger holes
- Drain away water to keep birds and nests dry
- Allow for good airflow and ventilation
- Include a detachable wall or roof for yearly cleaning
Urban sprawl and an ever-growing human population means that there are fewer trees for our feathered friends and so bird houses mean much more than a decorative statement. That said, a bird house can make a terrific design addition to your home.
Some people like to build bird houses that are miniatures of their own homes, while others craft tributes to famous structures. The other 90% of the population buys their birdhouses, though, and with nearly a thousand in stock we probably have one that will blow away every birdbrain on the block.