Building Nest Boxes

Click above for free written & illustrated directions in pdf.

Splendid nest box above, Bourke below.
Nest boxes can be easy and inexpensive to build. Here are several photos of nest boxes we built for our Bourke and Splendid parakeets. I held the pieces while my husband, Ed Lewis, cut, drilled, or glued.

These can be adapted for larger birds by increasing their size.

If it is to be for budgerigar parakeets, you will need to carve a round dent in the bottom so that their eggs remain in that area. Budgies don't require nesting material, but they do need a circular indentation approx. two inches in diameter (across), gently sloping inward  until about 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch deep at the center. It should not be any deeper than this. The indentation is put in the center of the box floor.

Three Rosy Bourke eggs and newly hatched chick by shell
Bourke and/or Splendid parakeets lay their eggs in nesting material, and most seem to choose a corner of the box. Probably the best nesting material is pine shavings which can be purchased by the bag. Pine shavings are commonly used in pet cages for hamsters and other rodents. Do not use cedar shavings...the smell offends the birds and they are unlikely to use the box.

All these boxes were designed and built by Ed Lewis, my husband. Written instructions and illustrations to build a standard-sized parakeet nest box were drawn up by Ed so that I could post them here. Simply click the link to be taken to download them to your computer. If you have any problem understanding them, don't hesitate to contact us at  They were easy for me to follow, but I watched the nest boxes being built ... Smile.

Peeking inside

Rosy Bourkes happily using a cockatiel-sized nest box.

Same boxes as shown in first photo,
but with their tops up. One lifts from
side and the other lifts from back
(or front, depending on how you see it). 
P.S. Ed is also E. G. Lewis, author of WITNESS and DISCIPLE.
To learn more about the Novels, click on

Many variations are used by parakeets. This one lifts from
the side, partially open here. A small piece at the bottom
holds the upper piece that slides up or down in grooves.

Normal Bourkes also using a sliding side-opening nest box.

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