Fri, 12 Feb 2021
National Nestbox Week runs from February 14-21. The national initiative has run annually since 1997 and encourages the public to create homes for nesting birds.
British birds are short of nesting holes, partly because our gardens, parks and woodland are neater and tidier than they used to be, depriving birds of natural holes to find a home. In addition, there are fewer handy nooks and crannies in modern buildings. Therefore, the populations of many bird species are down as a result of this housing shortage.
Naturalist, author and wildlife TV presenter Nick Baker said: "By putting up a nestbox, you’re simply replacing all those natural cavities that would have existed in the wild woods standing where your garden is now. Every new bird box represents a missing piece of our natural architecture that’s been in gradual decline over the centuries.
"You really can’t put up too many of the things, whether it’s a classic nestbox with a hole, a tea chest for an owl, a wedge-shaped box for Treecreepers or an open-fronted box for robins, flycatchers and thrushes."
The good news is that everyone can do their bit to help… and your own garden’s a great place to start.
Alongside common visitors – like blue tits, great tits, house sparrows, robins and starlings – putting up a box will also boost your chance of attracting rarer species into the bargain.
Don’t forget that nestboxes are good for us too. Spending time in the garden, building your own box and watching birds make themselves at home are all great stress-busters.