1. Learn about local birds. Select bird you want to
have use your bird house.
2. Research the ideal bird house for your bird.
3. Plan and design your bird house to fit your bird’s
habits and preferences.
4. Survey your house and yard. Pick a location for the bird house.
5. Create a paper birdhouse. Remember, the design
must incorporate wood and metal materials.
6. Optional: Make a cardboard prototype.
7. Plan your final design. Include wood and metal. Use of other materials, including recycleables is encouraged.
8. Research and specify the “smart” technology. You
will probably have several choices.
9. Build your bird house and add “smart” electronic
components and complete wiring.
10. Write computer code that allows the electronic to
communicate with eachother. Test the electronics.
11. Take Bird House home and mount birdhouse in
yard. Hook up the electronics.
12. At home: observe birds, record activity and make
field notes on bird behavior around the bird house.
13. Make a final journal entry on the project. Describe
results, and conclusions. Note your successes as
well as thinking about anything that could be
improved if you were to repeat the project.
NOT ALL BIRD HOUSES LOOK ALIKE
Bird houses come in all sizes, shapes, and colors. Some are very functional, but not very interesting to look at. Some are nearly as elaborate and a real house or even a castle; and very beautifuly decorated. You have a lot of room to be creative with this project as long as you include wood and metal in the design.
We should add that while you must use wood and metal at least, we encourage you to consider plastics, composites, fiberboards. It would also be very cool to add something that has been recycled – like roofing materials, or soda bottle siding. Use your imagination, your creativity, andthink different!
One final thing: you must plan and build in "smart" electronics that communicate wirelessly. Some set-up can take pictures and send them wirelessly to your laptop, some send a Tweet each each time a bird enters the house. There are very cool options to consider, and the opportunity to learn a lot about microcircuitry and coding.
The other extreme. A bird Hosue in the style of a castle. Do birds like this better?Your success will be measured not only by the "design," but even more by the behavior of birds you have chosen to build the house for. Do they like it? Do they nest there? Or is it the wrong design for them? Plain or fancy,
you need to understand what attracts them and what sends then flying away.
Learn About Your Bird
The fact is, not everybody bird in the neigborhood will jump at your invitation to stick around and occupy the new house you worked so hard to build for them. But, don't worry. There are nearly 50 American bird species willing to nest in artificial houses intended for that purpose. Like any house guest, some are less picky than others. Birds will decide to stay and build a nest or move on depending on a wide variety of factors, such as thedepth, overhang, size of the perch outside and diameter of the entrance hole. What's essential for you is research. Knowing the specific desires of the bird you hope to lure to your house and creating a house that's just right for them.
Check out this link . . . "All About Birdhouses"
the links below will need to be copied/pasted into browser
And this one . . . "Right Bird, Right House" to learn which birds are the best candidates for where we live.
And . . . "Tips for Making Bird Houses and Nest Boxes"
And . . . "Making a Safer Bird House"
We very much want you to use your own creativity. Don't just copy something you have seen. Still, there is no doubt seeing some cool bird houses will inspire you and get your imagination fired up. Here's a link to a website with many many bird houses. Some are pretty out there. Enjoy.
"78 Decorative, Painted, Outdoor & Wooden Bird Houses"
The final post for this project [Spring Project. Post 3] will be about the smart house aspect of the project. Stay tuned!
That's going to be really fun and a big challenge.