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Building the Aviary Tree

In my aviary I wanted to give my birds a little of a more natural looking tree and perches. I have a bunch of grapevine growing wild in valley behind my house and decided to it would make a fine tree. I use it frequently in my cages for perches and the birds like the varied sizes each branch provides and love the strip the stringy bark. Here is half of my first grapevine harvest:

The big one on the right is nearly 4in in diameter and will form the trunk part of my tree. I am using all stainless steel screws to hold it together except for one or two lag bolts that are outside the cage and out of the birds reach.

I started with the trunk which is held in the place with a lag bolt at the top and supported on a 6x6 square pine block on the bottom.

For each of the main branches I first cut them to length and then used a large forstner bit and drum sander bit to cut a curve out of the end to fit the trunk without a gap. I screwed the the branch to the trunk using 2 stainless 4 inch screws, and to the cage wall with 1 screw and a large washer.

First Branch

Once I got the larger branches in place I started to add the smaller perches that are more straight across. For these I used a forstner bit to drill a hole the same diameter as the perch and them screwed them in from the other side.

Bo and Herbie are trying it out.

Here is Gonzo trying it out for the first time.

I still have some things to do like make some all-weather toys and I have some plastic grapevines with leaves coming tomorrow. I want to add the vine to the top and some spots on the side to give the birds some areas that are not as exposed to the sun and to predators. Not that predtors could even get near them trough the cage but they don't know that so I want them to feel safe.

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