As you prepare your nest boxes for the upcoming spring season, we all need to think like birds, not humans.  If you make your own birdhouses or plan to purchase one soon, take a look below the entrance hole.  A properly designed nest box that have the safety of birds in mind will not have a perch.  Look at the natural holes birds excavate in trees or fence posts.  Birds do not add perches to these homes and neither should we.

Birds that will use nest boxes are clingers.  They use the edges of the entrance holes to go inside these nest boxes.  Some people believe they are helping wild birds by giving them perches.  Without realizing it, perches only help predators of wild birds.  Squirrels and chipmunks will happily rest on these perches while they spend their time chewing on the openings to enlarge them. 

So, if you wish to help your birds, keep the perches off your nest boxes.  They will appreciate this effort more than you know.  Keep your birdhouses clean, properly attached to posts or trees, and far enough off the ground to avoid leaping cats. 

Enjoy your birds!  Keep your eyes peeled for that first wild bird that chooses your backyard to raise their young.  Let us know which bird has decided to stay at your house.