A few nights ago, I attended a Landcare workshop for constructing nesting and roosting boxes for native birds and mammals. I had a wonderful time. The Landcare co-ordinator and the project officer, Peter and Steve, put together a great activity.
A local timber mill at Heyfield provided the raw material – 25mm kiln dried hardwood, Messmate I think. The timber was machined to size and predrilled by the inmates at the Fulham Prison. The individual pieces along with the necessary hardware like screws, hinges, etc were wrapped together to form a nest/roost box pack for a particular species. We, the participants, simply had to provide a screwdriver or battery drill.
It was a simple matter to select the box we wanted to construct, check the plan provided, and assemble and screw the components together. Peter and Steve were on hand to provide assistance. To my mind, help was hardly needed – the project was very well planned. I found it very pleasing to note that several families attended and the children were getting very involved in assembling their boxes.
The Landcare support staff provided a delectable barbecue dinner, after which we were given some advice by Steve on how to locate and fix the boxes once we got them home. We each recorded our contact emails and the boxes we’d built. Landcare will follow up in the months to come to see how successful we’ve been in getting particular birds or mammals to use the boxes.
The above picture shows a selection of boxes I’ve put together on the night and subsequently. The large box on the bottom is for a Barn Owl. From left to right, the ones on top are for Brushtail Possum, Bat, Owlet Nightjar, and Pardalote. I need to paint them then design some means of attaching each one to the trees and buildings around the place – can’t wait!
It was a beaut night and a great idea.