If you live in more of a suburban to rural area and have birds a plenty or a regular wildlife visitor to your backyard, building a bird hide is a perfect activity for you and your family.
A bird hide, also called a bird blind in North America, is a structure that’s used to help camouflage you while you watch and/or get great photos of wildlife.
We were giving our yard a general spring clean-up and I was chopping some of the palm branches to keep them away from the fence. Rather than lumping them into the trailer and taking them to the dump, I thought the cut offs could be used to make a nice observation bird hide instead.
This is how I made it.
I cut all the palm fronds off of the palm branches to keep them for later use.
I measured four palm branches and cut them to similar lengths.
I grabbed my left over rope from the spider web obstacle course and tried to remember my trusty knot knowledge from the time I was a scout. I couldn’t (I was never really into knots). Luckily, the internet had exactly what I needed. This video gives a really good tutorial on how bind two poles with a diagonal lashing.
I lashed both sides of the bird hide.
Next, I stood up the two sides (Miss Possum helped) and I placed the pole on top. Miss Possum held it while I did a similar knot to keep the frame sturdy.
Next I used some guylines from our camping tent to ensure it would be safe for the girls. You could also make your own here.
We placed all the palm fronds on top. If you don’t have palms, you could use any sturdy branches and foliage available to you.
Miss Possum and I spent a few mornings sitting in the hide, watching the birds fly on to our fence and then onto the neighbour’s roof.
I must admit that I had a hard time getting close-up photos of birds while in the hide, but that’s only due to our house location and perhaps my lack of patience!
I did score this little one of a little regular visitor to the flowers outside of our window (the reason I set up the bird hide in that location in the first place). I cant be certain but I think it’s a brown honeyeater.
The best thing about this bird hide is that it’s versatile. It can be used to observe animals up-close without them knowing you’re there but it doesn’t need to be used as a bird hide all the time. Instead, it can become whatever your child’s imagination wants it to be – a nature hut, fairy house, bird nest or hide out. They way it can be used seems endless!