Robins are fiercely territorial birds and will do battle to protect their boundaries.
Their chosen space is only around the size of a small garden, so if you have a regular robin visitor, you can safely assume that he has chosen your garden to make his home.
Their decision is based on the proximity of food, water, shelter, and nesting materials. They want somewhere to invite their mating partner and safely raise their young.
If your garden provides a ready-made nesting box, that far reduces the work they need to do, although the robins will still seek materials to give the nest a soft interior lining.
The best nesting boxes for robins differ slightly from the conventional boxes that you might be used to seeing. Robins won’t think about using a box with a small entrance hole, preferring an open-fronted box instead.
Robins like a good vantage point to see any oncoming threat, whilst also having some natural cover to keep them secure.
Replicating the way robins build their nests in the wild is the best way to attract them to your nesting box.
I have chosen my 3 favourite nesting boxes currently available, 1 budget, 1 premium, and 1 decorative.
Dimensions: 21 x 20 x 28cm
Robins choose to nest in very sheltered areas, preferably surrounded by shrubbery. What could blend into the background more than a nesting box made from a hollowed-out log? This isn’t cast from resin, it truly is a piece of natural log.
The boxes are often made from silver birch and arrive with the bark still intact. The tree used or the colouring may vary throughout the year but you can rest safe in the knowledge that the wood used is FSC certified and from a sustainable source.
The box is very well-made, it feels sturdy. It has a pre-drilled hole on the backplate, ready to be hung. The lid is hinged requiring the user to loosen a screw before lifting it to clean out the box when the young have fledged. A clean box attracts visitors over and over again.
As it is made from wood the box can be left out year-round, and it will provide excellent insulation for the nesters. The open-fronted entrance will not only attract robins but also pied wagtails and spotted flycatchers. Just ensure you place it out of the reach of cats and hidden from the view of magpies.
I love this robin nesting box, it has everything to protect from the elements and predators and is the ideal place for robins to hatch and raise their brood.
Dimensions: 16.5 x 24 x 21.5cm
The half oval, open entrance is what will initially attract robins to this nesting box. Once they discover it they will be treated with cosiness and warmth. There are even a couple of ventilation holes in the base to increase airflow and prevent the build-up of condensation. This is particularly useful if you choose to pop a viewing camera inside.
It is made from sustainable, FSC certified, 100% fir, a wood known for its strength, and natural protection against rot and pests. It isn’t waterproof unless it is treated, however, it is very weather resistant. The bird table will remain durable and be a part of your garden for many years to come.
It is sturdy and well-built, each piece of wood is at least 18mm thick.
There is no fiddly building to undertake with this nesting box, it arrives fully assembled. It has a rear strip with pre-drilled holes for easy mounting on a tree or wall.
The box is held together with brass screws, they will last forever almost. There is a removable hatch for easy access to empty and clean the box ready for the next season.
I love this nesting box, it is untreated and safe for your birds. It is robust, durable, and weatherproof. It even comes with a brood calendar and a handy garden bird guide.
Dimensions: 21 x 12 x 12cm
This is an adorable nesting box for robins, fun yet practical.
It has plenty of interior space to hatch and nurture a young family whilst also offering the open-front that the robin prefers.
It is made from ceramic fired at incredibly high heat to make it durable, and resistant to frost. Installation is simple, there are holes if you want to drill it to the tree, or the handle doubles as an ideal hanger.
The lid of the teapot acts as a canopy. Not only does this keep strong sunlight, wind, and rain off the birds, but it also protects against any predators gaining access.
There are ventilation holes, and increased airflow is gained through the spout. This helps keeps the nest at the ambient temperature to raise nestlings.
It is finished in lovely shades of brown and green enabling it to blend beautifully amongst the shrubs. Fit it to a wall with a climber or shrub trained around it and not only will it enhance your garden, but you might also provide a safe home for a family of robins.
What do robins use to line their nests?
A robin’s nesting box should be placed in a secluded position with plenty of cover. Ivy, shrubs, and climbing plants over good coverage. They should have shelter from direct sunlight and high winds, and preferably away from any places that predators regularly patrol, particularly cats.
It is usually the female robin that builds or lines the nest. Their favourite materials are moss and hair for their softness and warm, insulating properties.
Collect any pet hair after a brush and place it in clumps in the shrubbery near to the robin’s nesting box, it is an amazing sight to behold.
The best nesting box for robins can brighten up any garden and provide a safe haven for a family of robins. Be patient, the birds may not use the box immediately, but given time, they will make several return journeys to scope the box out before finally deciding to move in.