DIY - Building an aviary

in #homesteading6 years ago

I’m not a professional builder, I deal with legal issues for living but I really do enjoy creating and establishing things around the house. Our old English friend told me once: “After all, this is what makes a man, isn’t it?” I think he’s right.

Now, I would like to share with you my AVIARY project and its background in two parts.

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The beginning and phase #1

Background

I never wanted birds as pets. When I met my partner, one of her kids had a cockatiel in a cage in his room. I didn’t pay any attention to the bird, although he sometimes was noisy, but he never disturbed me very much.
3 years ago, we bought a house, and the parrot moved together with us. The pet got the living room as his home, and this was fine, only the dirt he made was annoying. After a few months, he passed away. I felt sorry for the animal and for his master, but it was also pleasant to bring upstairs the cage and conquer back the living room.

The shock

We were living our happy life for a few months, suddenly they arrived home with two fresh-hatched cockatiels, they had hardly any feathers on. We brought back the cage, the boys fed them from syringe.

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As they grew older, they got more and more loud, and produced unbelievable amount of dirt. When the masters let them out of the cage for flying, they collided with everything and of course they dropped everywhere.

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The anger

For these reasons, I wanted to get rid of them. Several ways of execution *(making a stew or soup of them, BBQ them etc.) crossed my mind, especially when they woke me up by screeching at 4.30am at weekend. They or me, that was the question.

Looking for a solution

I did some research on the Internet, wanting to learn why the hell they are so noisy. The answer was quite simple. They were bored and they didn’t have enough exercise (meaning flying). Then I got enlightened: we have got a big garden, so I should build an AVIARY for them.

The plan

I looked for online pictures of aviaries, did some scratches and made calculations. I kept saying: I can do it. Half year before I had built an isolated doghouse for our German Sheppard puppy that gave me the confidence.
The base of the construction should be made of concrete. That way the typical domestic predators (weasels, rats, polecats) cannot dig into the aviary. I used wood as the skeleton of the structure. I chose wire netting, that’s strong and thick enough, and nothing can get in or out through it. I planned a shelter from OSB against cold, wind and precipitation, and I started the work.

The work

The size of the aviary:

  • length is 3m
  • width is 1m
  • height is 2m

It’s big enough for two birds, isn’t it?

First, I dug the base out and made the levelling, then I laid the concrete paver blocks and I filled soil in the holes. The thickness of the blocks is 10cm, and the other two dimensions are 40x60cm.

I used 5x5 cm wood sticks and cut them to the proper size. I polished them a bit and used woodfiller and two layers of woodstain for protection. It was annoying that it took two weeks because it was raining all the time.

The next step was the two sidewalls. The bottom and the top sticks are 3m long, the vertical sticks are 2m. I put them 50cm away from each other.
I fixed the two elements together with 1m-long sticks and the main structure was ready.
I fastened the wire netting with a stapler to the wall and on half of the top.

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At this point I had to realize that I made a terrible mistake. I didn’t give a thought on how I would fix the building to the ground. First, I wanted to bound the walls to the paver blocks with strong wires, but I abandoned this idea finally. The walls and the roof created a too big surface for a strong wind to catch it up and I was worried that the whole building could fly away.

Here you can see the final solution:

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Then I cut out the proper-sized panels from OSB and screwed them to the wall. I bought a small window for the shelter, and I built it in. After isolating the inner side of the shelter, I covered that side with OSB panels as well.

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Finally, I put the roof on, which was made from bitumen sheets.

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The AVIARY was almost ready to move in, only the furniture was left. We used ropes and branches of fruit-trees.

Conclusions

The two annoying little bastards enjoyed it a lot. They got a better life to live, changed their behaviour, kept flying happily and I finally got back my peaceful living room.
It was a WIN-WIN situation for everybody.

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Later, we figured out that the aviary is too big for two cockatiels, so we purchased another six during the last summer, so they are now eight. And I improved the aviary further, about which I will post later…

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A good solution i'd say. I always think those cages are too small. This aviary is cracking good work! 💯🐒

Thank you! I do agree with you. Even if you let them out in your apartment. It's more convenient for everybody. The birds appreciated my efforts, they are more friendly. They can fly and live according to their natural biorhythm.

Right on great job! 💯🐒

nice aviary you built...looking forward to seeing how it comes along

Thank you, stay tuned! :-)

Thank you, Sir! It's not to compare to your garden shed, but I'm still proud of it! :-)

I don't know much about birds , but it appears you filled the requirements of a happy home.

Thank you! They haven't complained yet! :-)

You built a very well designed aviary which the birds must surely appreciate much more than being cooped up inside of the house. Problem solved without cooking.! 🐓🐓

Thank you! I could hardly resist the temptation to cook them. Regarding the aviary, it was only the beginning, I made some further improvements.

Take back your house! A new movement here on steemit. All species do well when they are with others of the same kind, meaning animals and plants. I tell the chickens to lay their eggs and park the crockpot right where they can have a good view of it. Lol🐓🐓

Good solution to your problem.

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