Bird Houses & Nesting Box: Chickadees, Pygmy & Brown-headed Nuthatches

Choosing and Setting up Nest BoxesFeeding HummingbirdsFeeding Wild Birds

Chestnut-backed and Siberian Chickadees, Pygmy and Brown-headed Nuthatches may use birds:

  • Chickadees, Titmice
  • Nuthatches
  • Woodpeckers – for Woodpeckers fill the nestbox to the top with wood shavings/chips or animal bedding. Avoid fine sawdust as it remains damp and can become moldy. This serves two purposes: It will deter other birds from taking this box and the process of excavating the nestbox will encourage natural nesting behavior in woodpeckers.

Suitable Nestbox Size: ~ 9 inches tall.

Floor Dimensions: at least 4″ x 4″ .

Material to be used: Red Cedar (more durable than other wood material), rough cut boards or exterior-grade plywood at least 1/2″ thick. Unpainted. Ventilation openings in the floor and under the roof. Although some experts disagree with the notion that ventilation openings are needed at all. Please refer to this article for further information. This may also depend on location of nest box, exposure to direct sun as well as material used to build the nest box.

Entrance Hole: About 1.5 in diameter to keep the larger birds out, about 8 inches above the floor.

Roof: Hinged, secured with shutter hooks. Sloped down, overlapping on the sides and the front reduces exposure to rain and makes it more difficult for predators to get to the chicks or eggs.

Hardware: Best to use corrosion resistant, stainless steel and dichromate plated screws

Predator Guard: An inverted metal cone attached below the nextbox will provide some protection against predators.


Mount on a tree, post, fence or wall, ideally about four and twelve feet high with partial sun and shade.

Position nest far enough from roads, paths or trails to minimize disturbance.

Take nest box down after each breeding season, and repair and sanitize before reusing. this nest box.

The following nest box may be used by any one of the below cavity-nesting

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