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kestrel/screetch owl/flicker boxes (1 Viewer)

UrbanWild

Member
I've been lucky enough to get to use a decent sized shop for a few days. I've always wanted to build boxes for screetch owls, kestrels, and flickers. Below are some photos. I started with the plans from Nestwatch (Cornel). However the flat roof situation didn't sit well as last year we had the wettest year in recorded history and this year we are outpacing that. I think we're about 10 inches above normal. So I modified to a 15% slope for the roof and sides and had to bevel the top edge of the front panel in order for them to fit well. This brings me to a bit of a predicament. Those same slopes, while good for shedding water, make a top-hinged side for cleaning nearly impossible. I'm considering making the front of the box the clean out panel. Thoughts?

All that said, the back panels are longer for mounting. Now that I know where they are going, I may need to modify how the box is places on the back panel. I have a dual roof. I'm planning on putting the boxes under the eaves of the higher roof looking out over the lower one. That will protect them quite a bit more than an open metal pole which could end up as a lightning rod. Has anyone done something similar?

Photos on my phone are too big. Will log on later with reduced photos
 
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jmepler

It's just a flesh wound.
You can still use a side door. You just have to hinge it down from the top a bit.

Take a look at these plans.

Make sure that your hinge screws are straight across from each other, or the door will bind.

Box placement is a big factor in what birds use them. I just helped a friend do a survey of American Kestrel boxes. Boxes on telephone poles in good meadow habitat were much more likely to contain kestrels, while boxes on farm contained mostly European Starling nests.
 

UrbanWild

Member
Here are the boxes. Two styles... One for kestrel/screetch owl and another for flickers. Hole size is the same. Kestrel box is more girthy while flicker is taller and slightly more narrow.
 

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UrbanWild

Member
More pics
 

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UrbanWild

Member
And here is the last of the batch.
 

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UrbanWild

Member
I'm having trouble finding either solid brass or stainless steel Screw-in Square Bend Hooks. Is rather not have to replace hardware later

Rather than use screws in the top of the opening side (which will probably just be the front of each box) I'm thinking of using a brass piano hinge. Thoughts?

Additionally, if I make the cleaning side the front, I'd probably have to move the front panel down a quarter inch or so in order for it to swing upwards. If I did that, it would leave a gap right under the roof when closed. Ventilation? Would that size gap across the front be advisable? If would affect the size hinges I could use
 
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keithdog

Active member
Here is the box I just purchased. Hanging it today. The roof is not flat, so rain simply runs off. The front panel is how it opens for easy cleaning and installation. There is a gap at both the top and the bottom for ventilation. From what I have seen in youtube videos, this is a very successful design. Hope this helps. The photo does not show a gap where the front panel meets the base, but the one I received does have about a 1/4 inch gap.
 

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