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The home-built box is designed to not only provide a comfortable nest box but to also allow the camera to be mounted high enough to see the nest entrance and give a good view of activity inside.
It is built of 12mm exterior grade ply. The approximate exterior dimensions are 19cm square base with one side 20cm and the taller side 40cm. The entrance hole is cut to the size recommended by British Trust for Ornithology, just over 25mm. However the blue tits spent a number of weeks pecking at the hole to enlarge it!
To provide protection for the camera and cabling and with the thought of making the nest feel more cosy, an interior divider is mounted near the top. The hole in the middle is large enough to allow not only the lens but the infra-red LED lights to protrude allowing them to illuminate the nest at night.
The roof and longer side have opaque windows mounted in them. They allow in some daylight to give the camera a chance of producing colour pictures but not enough light to disturb the birds. The position of the windows is chosen so that neither window will get full sun at any time of day.
As with the camera, the resin windows were bought from www.handikam.com.
Five drain holes are drilled in the base to allow for drainage.
The interior of the box is untreated but the exterior is waterproofed with a water-based preserver.
The roof is easily removable to allow disconnection of the camera and the floor can be removed for cleaning each October.
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