Position the bird house far enough away from brush so predators cannot stage an ambush, but close enough to plants so parent birds can easily scout the area. Five to eight feet of distance is sufficient for most bird houses. Similarly, keep bird houses away from popular feeding areas to prevent territorial conflicts between feeding birds and nesting parents. Choose natural colors so the bird house will blend into the surroundings: Browns and dark shades of green are the most suitable choices and will be the most attractive to birds. If desired, decorate the house with natural materials to keep it concealed but still an ornamental focal point in the yard.
Snags with old woodpecker holes provide homes for swallows, chickadees, nuthatches, bluebirds, owls, and other cavity_nesting birds that are rarely able to excavate their own nest sites. Snags provide ideal hunting perches for Red_tailed and Rough_legged Hawks, Bald Eagles, Hawk Owls, Great_horned Owls, and other raptors. Snags provide "songposts" to a wide variety of birds. Many small birds use songposts sticking above other vegetation to sing (to attract mates and proclaim nesting territory boundaries) and to perch on when looking out for predators and/or other birds.