This large box is for installation on a tree and follows the design recommendations set out by the Barn Owl Conservation Trust.
It has a deep nest chamber with a 45cm inside drop from the entrance to ensure the young don't emerge too early, and a wide platform with a lip to keep them safe. The platform slopes slightly downwards for drainage, and the box is sealed and topped with roofing felt to ensure it stays dry and snug inside. An inspection hatch at the base allows for cleaning.
Why are nest boxes important?
Natural nest sites are being lost having devastating consequences for bird species. Birds are an essential component of functioning ecosystems and have a direct impact on human populations and millions of other species. It is therefore important to provide our feathered friends with a home.
MATERIAL: FSC certified exterior grade plywood
DIMENSIONS (MM): 740 X 590 X 500
ENTRANCE (MM): 130 X 120
WEIGHT (KG): 8
SPECIES: Barn Owl
SITING: site in a mature tree with a thick trunk, 3m high, near hedgerow or woodland edge, and rough grassland. Ensure there are few or no low branches. The entrance should be visible even when the tree is in leaf.
The tree should overlook open countryside, and there should be rough grassland for hunting within 1km. The birds will tolerate noise and activity if they can hide in a box. However, you should not site a barn owl box within 1 km of a motorway or other fast, unscreened, main roads due to the high risk of road deaths. Pastoral habitats are best. Avoid urban, suburban, woodland, and high mountain areas.
MAINTENANCE: it is important that the box depth is maintained by clearing out the box once it has more than about 80mm of nest debris. If Jackdaws use the box it must be cleaned out every year (wear gloves and a dust mask). Boxes used only by breeding Barn Owls will need clearing out every 2 or 3 years.
Remember that under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, it is an offence to disturb breeding Barn Owls so nest boxes should only be cleaned out between November and January – and preferably in dry, calm weather, so that any roosting owl does not get flushed out into the rain or wind.
Trees suitable for barn owl boxes should be mature, with thick trunks, a high canopy and few or no low branches. There should be somewhere secure to position the nest box at least 3m above ground level. The tree should be an isolated individual, within a hedgerow, or on a woodland edge. Barn owls are interested in openings and holes, not boxes and trees so a passing owl should be able to see the entrance easily from a distance, even when the tree is in full leaf.
The tree should overlook open countryside, and there should be rough grassland for hunting within 1km. The birds will tolerate noise and activity if they can hide in a box. However, you should not site a barn owl box within 1 km of a motorway or other fast, unscreened, main roads due to the high risk of road-deaths. Pastoral habitats are best. Avoid urban, suburban, woodland and high mountain areas.
How to install a barn owl box in a tree:
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