I guess it all started when we (I have a twin!) were about 10 years old and influenced by our father an aviary was built housing budgerigars.
We moved several times and each time there had to be an aviary! As in most cases the feathered variety of birds took a back seat until I was married with children and the urge to keep and breed birds took hold once more!
Many years later with children grown up and having moved house several times and with the knowledge of past experiences a new birdroom and aviary was constructed which now house fife canaries, foreign finches from Australia and Africa and more recently a pair of Pekin Robins which originate from China although purchased from breeders within the UK.
To keep costs under control a second hand summer house was purloined, the timbers were thoroughly treated and painted with a wood preservative. The inside was insulated with cellotex and boarded over with 4mm ply and painted. As far as possible all gaps and holes were plugged to avoid vermin contamination. The timber floor was substituted for a concrete floor which in turn was treated with a damp proof membrane which also eliminated ‘concrete’ dust.
Only 6.25 mm gauge wire was used to protect against vermin and this was also laid deep under the planted aviary.
To protect the aviary from wild bird contamination and cats! polycarbonate sheeting was used for the roof and the back of the flight. In addition part of the apex roof of the shed was also replaced with clear polycarbonate sheeting to allow sufficient light – very important for the caged birds in the birdroom to ensure sufficient vitamin D is present.
Another tip I was able to employ was the painting of the aviary wire with black paint which masks the wire and allows easier viewing of the birds.
Planting the aviary involved vegetation which was compatible with the birds. Besides privet, a small grapevine and slow growing bamboo plants we were surprised when green shoots started to grow from the barren earthen floor! within a matter of weeks the aviary was like a forest. The vegetation was as a result of pieces of root of the plant Jerusalem Artichoke which had been left in the earthen floor! the photos tell the story. A remarkable plant for any planted aviary!!