How to Build a Wood Duck Nesting Box

How to Build a Wood Duck Nesting Box
Small and colorful with a distinctive call, wood ducks are a favorite with bird watchers. Although their migratory range covers much of the United States, their breeding and nesting area is limited to the central and eastern northern states. They nest in hollows in trees usually near waterways, but because suitable nesting areas are becoming scarce, they readily use boxes especially built for wood ducks.

Instructions

Difficulty: Moderately Easy

Things You’ll Need:
  • Untreated, rough cypress or redwood (1 inch x 12 inch x 9 foot plank) 10 inches x 14 inches piece of plywood Hardware cloth--6 inches x 1/4 inch strip Jig saw or hand saw Drill with 4 inch diameter saw bit Wood screws Nails Hammer Wooden post Staple gun and staples
  • Untreated, rough cypress or redwood (1 inch x 12 inch x 9 foot plank)
  • 10 inches x 14 inches piece of plywood
  • Hardware cloth--6 inches x 1/4 inch strip
  • Jig saw or hand saw
  • Drill with 4 inch diameter saw bit
  • Wood screws
  • Nails
  • Hammer
  • Wooden post
  • Staple gun and staples
Step 1
Using the saw, cut the plank into 2 23 inch lengths, 2 24 inch lengths and a 10 inch length. Cut 1 of the 23 inch, 1 of the 24 inch and the 10 inch pieces to a width of 10 inch.
Step 2
Drill a 4 inch diameter hole in the center of the 23 inches x 10 inches piece about 4 inches from the top. This is the front of the box.
Step 3
Staple the strip of the hardware cloth to the inside of the front of the box leading from the hole downward. This is to help the chicks climb up from the bottom of the box when they are ready to leave the nest.
Step 4
Assemble the rest of the box from the rest of the pieces of plank. Secure with the nails.
Step 5
Attach the piece of plywood to the top of the box with four wood screws. The roof needs to be removable for cleaning after nesting season.
Step 6
Attach the finished box to the post using long wood screws and scrap pieces of wood from the plank. The box should be placed about four feet off the ground above water level.

Tips & Warnings

 
To keep other types of birds from nesting in the box, make the opening oval rather than round. Consider adding a baffle to the post below the box to keep predators from entering the box.
 
To keep other types of birds from nesting in the box, make the opening oval rather than round.
 
Consider adding a baffle to the post below the box to keep predators from entering the box.

Resources

Article Written By Catherine Rayburn-Trobaug

Catherine Rayburn-Trobaugh has been a writer and college writing professor since 1992. She has written for international companies, published numerous feature articles in the "Wilmington News-Journal," and won writing contests for her poetry and fiction. Rayburn-Trobaugh earned a Master of Arts in English from Wright State University.

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