We put up our last wood duck house


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JJHACK
February 24, 2014, 12:52 AM
My son and I just finished putting up our 5 wood duck houses this weekend. We cemented in 2" EMT conduit. We chose this type post to reduce or eliminate the potential for predators like mink and raccoons from climbing up and getting into the house.

We also made hinged sides to clean them out easy every winter to start fresh in spring. If you have ever seen inside an old wood duck house they are filled with moldy junk that makes them rather disgusting inside.

http://www.jesseshunting.com/photopost/data/500/medium/image30.jpg

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rcmodel
February 24, 2014, 01:06 AM
Disgusting to you maybe?
But to a Wood Duck?

Ever look inside a hollow tree they usually nest in without annual cleaning, until it finally rots off and falls over?
Dead baby ducks, rotten eggs, layers & layers of parasites feeding on baby duck poop, and duck feathers.
Lots of old moldy duck feathers.

Now, that's truly disgusting!!!!!! :eek:

Naw, just messing with you! :D

Very Nice, and hard dedicated work!
And more power to you for doing it Sir!

Rc

Patocazador
February 24, 2014, 12:10 PM
The rotten eggs are the worst.

JJHack: Why the mesh-work on the outside? I put hardware cloth on the inside so the ducklings can climb to the exit and jump out. If predators climb the fence posts, try 1 1/2" galvanized pipe. It's smooth and won't rust. I get it free from well drillers who pull old pipe out with burned-up submersible pumps. They will usually cut it with a torch to the length I request at no charge.

JJHACK
February 24, 2014, 12:25 PM
Thanks for the tip on the Pipe!

Now I need to figure out why the photo is sideways? it was correct when I posted it? How does that change by itself?

I also need to figure out how to keep starlings out

buck460XVR
February 24, 2014, 06:42 PM
It's always good to give a little back to the resource that gives so many of us, so much. We generally hang our Woody boxes using 1-1 1/2'' galvanized pipe also using a floor flange on the bottom of the box. That way the box can be easily unscrewed from the post without tools for repair, cleaning or replacement without removing the post. Many times we will drive the post in water so the boxes can be hung over the water.

Most wood ducks I've seen/shot have been near........woods. I take it maybe there's a tree or two in the other 180 degrees?

Patocazador
February 24, 2014, 07:12 PM
My pond has oaks on one side but the ducks never use that area. They are only here for nesting and feed exclusively in the pond. I've never seen any foraging for acorns in the woody area that is adjacent.

The 5 boxes I have usually hatch out about 8 clutches of eggs. Some boxes are more popular than others. The woodies on my pond disappear after the eggs all hatch. They are all gone by Sept 15th usually.

twofifty
February 24, 2014, 07:32 PM
Duck hunters - still leaders in habitat and wildlife conservation.

JJHACK
February 24, 2014, 07:32 PM
Yes all wooded along the river, the box in the picture is on the shore of my pond. Wood ducks are in this pond every spring

markm_04
February 25, 2014, 12:50 AM
As buck460XVR said, I have always used 1.5" galvanized pipe screwed into a flange on the bottom of the box. I usually go out in the winter and cut a hole in the ice and drive the pipe into the bottom of the pond so that it will be hung over the water. I usually added about 4-5 inches of sawdust/wood chips In the bottom of the box for some nesting material.

When I was in college and spending numerous hours volunteering at a National Wildlife Refuge, I took on a project of monitoring Wood Duck nest boxes over the course of a couple of years. When I first went around and located, GPS'd, and mapped the boxes it was quite an undertaking. I cleaned out all of the boxes so they could all be fresh and started from a clean slate. It amazed me the amount of nesting materials and the layers upon layers of material that were in the boxes. Some of the boxes were packed nearly to the entrance hole with grass, twigs, egg shells, feces, and bones of deceased ducklings. Many of the boxes stayed active during my surveys and had good brood rates. A few were taken over by other duck species and a couple fell victim to predators before and after the eggs hatched. All this was to be expected as the number of boxes was near 60.

I am glad to see others providing for and giving back to wildlife and taking part in the conservation of habitat for many species of wildlife that are often overshadowed by the more popular game species that we hear about more often.

stiab
February 26, 2014, 12:06 AM
Just a couple thoughts: the ducks will clean the nests out themselves when it needs it. Each year there are old eggs parts and nesting remains in the water beneath my boxes. You can do it for them, but not doing it won't prevent them from using the boxes.

If you put the boxes over the water, there will be less concern for predators, except snakes. Snakes can climb the pipes shown in your pictures, so I cover them with stove pipe. Also other birds are less inclinded to use the boxes when over water.

Thanks for putting the boxes up!!

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