U.S. Department of Agriculture: Agricultural Research Service, Lincoln, Nebraska


Document Type


Date of this Version



Published by the United States Department of Agriculture in Farmers' Bulletin No. 1456 (1930) 24 p.


Birds appeal strongly to the interest and affection of mankind. Not only do they charm by their graceful forms, harmonious colors, sprightly actions, and usually pleasing notes, but they have an even more important claim upon our esteem because of their great economic value.

Birds feed upon practically all insect pests. They are voracious, able to move freely from place to place, and exert a steady influence in keeping down the swelling tide of insect life.

For economic as well as for esthetic reasons, therefore, an effort should be made to attract and protect birds and to increase their numbers. Where proper measures of this kind have been taken an increase of several fold in the bird population has resulted, with decreased losses from depredations of injurious insects.

This bulletin, one of a series (see footnote, page 2) describing the best methods of attracting birds, deals with nest boxes and other homes for birds, and is adapted for use throughout the United States. It supersedes Farmers' Bulletin No. 609, Bird Houses and How to Build Them.