Despite signs of spring all around us, there is still time to put up a nest box for use this summer, writes George Hogg (Hogg Estate Services).
There are never any guarantees a nest box will be accepted by a prospecting pair of birds, but that is just part of the excitement if they do.
Nest boxes for blue tits, great tits and tree sparrows are generally available at garden centres. You can also make your own by finding instructions online.
If you want to really push the boat out you can buy a box fitted with a miniature camera. By running the cable into your house and plugging it into your telly or PC, you can enjoy soap operas to rival anything you have ever seen before.
Young or old cannot help but be swept up in the drama of nest building, egg laying, incubating and chick feeding.
As if all that isn’t exciting enough, you will be as nervous as any new parent when the day finally comes for the fledglings to take that great leap of faith and tumble out into the big wide world.
It is all nerve wracking stuff but utterly compelling to watch.
What other investment can give such a return with so few weeks?
Of course your most likely occupants will be blue tits.
It my sincere belief that, if the blue tit was a rare bird, folk would cross continents to see one. How can such a common bird be so uncommonly beautiful?
And what greater reward for erecting a nest box than to ensure close and regular views of them throughout their fascinating life cycle?
So what are you waiting for? Get yourself a nest box and enter a whole new world of intimate Nature study.