Northern Flicker Box
Flickers are notoriously destructive - often drilling holes through the walls of houses - but they are also critically important birds that create nesting cavities used by many other species - including many small owls. Most of the flicker boxes I build and install are for situations where homeowners are at their wits end, frustrated by trying to deter flickers from pecking holes in their siding. I mount the box on the structure where the damage is boing done - or in the largest tree nearby. Often the flickers will use the nestbox and leave the house alone. Plus, they are territorial, so they chase other flickers away and defend your house: they've gone from being you enemies to your allies. It doesn't always work, but it works often enough that is definitely worth trying - especially compared the recurring cost and hassle of fixing holes in your siding every year.
My Flicker boxes have a 2.5" entrance hole, a floor that measures 7.25" x 7.25", and are around 22" tall.
Functional Design: Cleanout is quick and easy: just twist and pull the pin on the lower right side of the box to unlock the door, then pull the door pull to open. A steel ring surrounds the entrance hole, which prevents predators from enlarging the entry. Like all Nice Nests, these boxes have necessary drainage in the floor and ventilation above the door to keep the boxes cool and dry. The interior of the door is scored with horizontal grooves to help the fledglings climb up and out of the nestbox.
Aesthetics: Each Nice Nest is a unique work of functional art hand-made by me, Patrick Hannigan, in Twisp, WA. Nice Nests are made entirely out of wood salvaged from dump or burn piles in the Methow Valley. The imperfections of the wood are part of the beauty and character of each box. While the wood is salvaged, it is solid. The door pulls are a mix of funky old hardware, river rocks, and other found objects.
Quality Construction: Nice Nests are always screwed together - much more time consuming than using nails or staples, but it makes a durable difference. The fronts and roofs are made from cedar, fir, and pine salvaged from new construction, tear-downs or remodels. The sides, backs and floors are made from exterior-grade CDX scrap, which is exceptionally strong and never splits. Roofs, fronts and vulnerable areas are treated with my own custom non-toxic mix of tung oil, citrus oil, pine rosin, and beeswax.