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Dear Parrots magazine,

Nest boxes

I’m probably going to upset some nest box manufacturers here but just can’t let this go. I have been breeding parrots for just over 30 years and have used many different nest boxes. But most of mine do look as though they are past their sell-by date as they have been chewed and chewed by my breeding pairs.

What annoys me is when I go to shows and see traders selling nest boxes that have the entrance hole protected with metal facings. This is so unnatural and alien to the birds. In the wild, they will find a nest hole, probably on a dead part of a tree, which they will ‘chew out’ to the size and shape that suits them. Few nesting situations will have the exact size and shape for a particular pair, and the chewing is a natural process that they enjoy. I make most of my nest boxes, but even if I have had to buy one, I will partially cover the entrance hole with some off-cuts of softwood, leaving a ‘hole’ that is too small and that will encourage the birds to chew out.

So my boxes all look as though they have had their day, but they work great and I rarely have poor results. I would persuade anyone who is about to make a purchase, not to buy any boxes with metal cladding around the entrance hole.

Bernie White - by email




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