Bird sanctuary

Making a birdhouse: Invite nature to your backyard

Ever wanted to learn how to build a birdhouse out of wood? Then read on.

How to build a birdhouse out of wood

Whether you’re an amateur birdwatcher, want to entertain and educate your children or just looking for a new garden feature, a birdhouse is a great way to bring added interest to your backyard. The good news is that making your own is birdhouse simple, with the right know-how.

The following plans for building a birdhouse offer a great guide to do exactly that. You can either stick to the dimensions given or adjust them according to size of birdhouse that will suit the space you have available.

Instructions for building a birdhouse

  • Cut. To start building a birdhouse, you will need to cut seven pieces from a 10 x 6-inch cedar, cypress or pine board. You either do this yourself or ask someone at your local hardware store or lumber yard to do it for you.
    • For the floor, measure and cut a 5.5 x 8.5-inch piece
    • For the sides, cut two 4.5 x 6.5-inch pieces
    • For the roof, cut one 4.75 x 8.5-inch piece and one 5.5 x 8.5-inch piece
    • For the front and back, cut two 5.5 x 7.25-inch pieces. Then at 4.5 inches up both 7.25 inch sides, cut diagonally to the center of one of the 5.5 inch sides to create two house-shaped pieces.
  • Drill. Use a 1.5-inch hole saw bit (or ask someone at the hardware store or lumber yard) to cut the central entrance hole to the birdhouse at least 3 inches from the base of the front piece. Once the hole is drilled, sand its edges to ensure the birds have a smooth passage inside.
  • Protect. Before you begin assembling the birdbox, paint or stain each individual piece to weatherproof and ensure it will last over the long term. Make sure to leave all joint surfaces uncoated.

Leave the interior unpainted, as birds may peck at it and ingest some of the paint. Try to use more neutral and natural colors, since bright shades may scare birds and deter them from entering the birdhouse. Make sure all joint surfaces are clean before applying wood construction adhesive.

  • Assemble the floor, front, back and sides. Placing the floor piece on a work surface, apply wood construction adhesive to the 5.5-inch base of the front and back pieces, and adhere them at the front and back of the floor piece. Now swiftly apply wood construction adhesive to the base and sides of the side pieces and adhere them between the front and back pieces to form all four walls of the birdhouse. If some wood construction adhesive spills over the edges of the single floor pieces, you can scrape it away and easily clean it up with water. 
  • Assemble the roof. Placing the 5.5 x 8.5-inch piece on a work surface, apply wood construction adhesive to the 8.5-inch base of the 4.75 x 8.5-inch piece and adhere on top of the 5.5 x 8.5-inch piece to form an L-shape. Once this has dried, apply wood construction adhesive to the top of the front and back pieces and place the roof on top to adhere it in place.
  • Dry. Wood construction adhesive can take up to 48-hours to fully dry – check your glue’s instructions. Until that period is up, keep your birdhouse indoors before hanging or mounting it. Did you know? You can also use construction adhesive for mounting the birdhouse.

The best glue for making a birdhouse

When it comes to finding a wood construction adhesive for building a birdhouse, Loctite PL Premium Max is ideal. A premium quality construction adhesive specifically formulated for bonding all types of wood for interior or exterior projects, its low odor makes it perfect for birdhouses.