This charming birdhouse has topped one of our gate posts since it we bought it new. As it aged, the paint has faded and chipped. The barn red roof became spotted with pale green lichen, giving the birdhouse a new kind of beauty, where is was starting to fit in more with nature than with manmade structures.
A couple days ago, I found the roof askew and half fallen off. The birdhouse had slid past gracefully aging into rundown and beyond repair.
Rather than just discarding birdhouse, I am laying out the pieces and making a pattern to build another with a similar shape, but not exactly the same. Some improvements in design are called for to make the house more sturdy and to make it possible to clean the inside. By making a hinged door on the back, there will be access to the interior for annual housecleaning. Also, the ridge of the roof needs to have a piece of metal flashing to prevent the rain from coming in, getting the nest wet and rotting out the inside.
Hopefully, I will have the new birdhouse built and ready for occupants before Spring gets here. It seems like a long time from now, with it being only autumn and most of the leaves still on the trees, but it will be here soon enough.
It seemed a shame to throw out the lovely nest found in the birdhouse cavity, so I tucked it under a potted bush. I was beautifully constructed. Large twigs filled the bottom and the corners of the house. Then the twigs diminished in size, getting smaller towards the center with soft grasses and small vine-like material lining the nest cavity. Even the inside was carefully lined with a plastic wrapper. I hope the nest builder deems the replacement house worthy to occupying next year.