Why we are putting bird and bat boxes in our latest development!

At our latest development 'Beech Gardens' in Halifax we decided to install bird and bat boxes into the homes to enhance the site for wildlife. Some people may wonder why? So here is a brief explanation of the benefit of these boxes.

Our native wildlife is under a lot of pressure at the moment, with the ever growing human population wildlife's natural habitat is disappearing rapidly to make way for new buildings. This means the amount of places for our native animals to make their homes is dwindling. Generally, new builds are made impregnable to wildlife, meaning there are no spaces for any animals to nest or build homes after the area has been built on. This lack of opportunity for the local wildlife to make homes can have a big impact, but by doing something as simple as putting a box into a house or garden we can provide much needed support to our urban wildlife by providing them homes too.

Which Box?

There are a variety of designs and styles of boxes available and what type you will need will depend on the animal it is going to be used for. If it is for a bat, then a box can be integrated into the walls with an entrance that allows the bats to access a small cavity, this way the box is hidden rather then exposed, however there are also boxes available that can be fitted to walls and trees too. The boxes can come in a variety of sizes, you may want a small box just for a few bats to dwell in, or a larger box to host a colony. This is also the cases for other animal boxes such as bird boxes which are just as diverse in their size and style. At our 'Beech Garden' development we have opted to use bat boxes from Habibat and bird boxes from Schwelgar.

Where to site your box/es?

When it comes to a bat box higher is better! Ideally you want the box positioned as close to the eaves as possible, in a sheltered, sunny position, facing away from prevailing winds. It will also help a bat to navigate its way to the box if it is placed near a tree line or hedgerow if possible, for example at the side of the house where the back garden connects to the property. It is also important to not place the bat box near a lit area as bats are not keen on the light this may put them off setting up their home there.

For bird boxes it all depends on the type of box you buy and what species of bird you want to attract. But whatever you decide you ideally want the box to face north-east, to avoid disturbance from strong sunlight and winds. It is also important to consider the potential access of predators, for example you want to make sure the box is high enough that any local cats can't get to it. It is also a good idea to have plenty of space around the entrance of the box so the birds have a clear flight path into the box.

Once your boxes are installed.....

......don't be tempted to peek! It is against the law to disturb nesting birds, and by disturbing them you could risk the parents abandoning the eggs, or you could scare any fledglings into leaving the box before they are ready. If you really want to watch your garden friends invest in a special wildlife camera so you can watch them from the comfort of your home, without risking them moving out!

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