Outdoor Aviary

A well constructed outdoor aviary is the foundation to your bird breeding success.
There are many factors that are needed to be considered when designing the perfect great gouldian aviary.
The number one factor is being able to provide a draft free interior for winter and air flow for removing head in summer.
Here is a description of the methods and materials I used to construct my purpose built gouldian finch outdoor aviary.
It is approximately 9 feet by 9 feet with an open flight section.

This aviary is very secure as gouldian finches are very expensive birds.

Outdoor Gouldian Finch  Aviary Construction Details

purpose built gouldian finch outdoor aviaryThe main door, all the walls roof and floor are  constructed out of metal with vertical steel bars to finish off the security of the main front entrance door.
The frame of this bird aviary was built using steel tubing.

The tubing was welded into a steel floor sections and interconnected with tubes that fit into the other sections.

If there is a need to disassemble it in the future it can be done easily by unscrewing all of the sections.

A mig welder and a standard home arc welder was used to weld the steel  tubing frames together.

Footings were used to build the rooms up off the ground for two reasons.

The first reason, the ground was not level.

The second but most important reason was to avoid damp floors and to prevent rotting of the plywood floor in the two bird rooms.
outdoor aviary stumps in concrete
The floor frame posts were concreted into footing first.
The floor frame was attached. Wall frames and a roof were then installed.

Sisilation was fixed to the outer frame before the outer shell was covered with color bond sheet metal.

 

internal steel aviary frame

The sheet metal was attached with self drilling screws and pop rivets for additional security to prevent theft of any birds.

The pop rivets would have to be drilled out by a thief and this is not easy with stainless steel pop rivets.

The floor has galvanized sheet metal attached on the bottom to prevent rodents from chewing holes through the plywood floor structure.

 insulation on steel aviary frameFiberglass batts are then installed in all the wall, roof and floor cavities between the inner layer of plywood and outer layer of sisilation. This creates an  insulation sandwich to protect the aviary from the external heat or cold depending on the season.

All of the internal wall and roof skin is made of plywood. The combination of color bond, sisilation, insulation batts and plywood is very effective method to reduce the extreme heat or cold from being an issue for both of the bird rooms.

When you step into this aviary on a cold winters day it is surprising how warm the interior actually is. With a bit of sun shinning through the clear roof sections the interior warms up very nicely.

aviary front side facing north

It is important to build an aviary with the open flight facing the rising morning sun.

In the winter this helps to warm the birds up after those bitter cold nights.

In the summer the hot sun set is on the fully covered side of the  aviary reducing the amount of heat inside.

For those days when is extremely hot there are removable plywood panels to allow air flow into the aviary.

open flight area of gouldian aviary

The inner door has a removable plywood panel which can be placed under the clear section of roof to help prevent the suns hot rays from entering inside and overheating the interior.

On these hot days the internal temperature is normally only about 1 degree hotter inside than the external temperature.

 

The Colony Breeding Room

aviary colony breeding nest boxes The colony bird room is approximately 6 x 6 feet with 4 main perches, feeding and water stations.

The colony breeding room is entered via a 3/4 height door from the selective breeding room.

This door has a latch which is locked from the selective breeding room. It is possible to hang about 6 breeding boxes off the 3 walls.

This is the maximum number of nest boxes recommended in a room of this size.

 bird door from outdoor open flight

The birds are free to leave and enter the colony room via the bird door.

The door is operated from inside the selective cage breeding section of the aviary by pushing or pulling an orange piece of plastic connected to a rectangular piece of sheet metal in between two plywood runners. When the door is closed it stops the gouldians from entering the open flight section or keeps them out while cleaning the colony room.

When it is approaching dusk the birds return back into the colony room to roost for the night till the morning.

It is very important to construct your aviary wall linings with wood as the gouldian finch has a tendency to roost right up against a wall at night.

If it is a very cold night the bird will loose allot of body heat if the wall is made of metal such as corrugated iron or colorbond.

My aviary walls are all filled with insulation batts and lined with sisalation then finished with an inner lining of plywood. This provides my birds with a surface which will not draw any body heat away from them over night.

You can easily loose a gouldian to a cold night with metal walls if they are not lined with wood on the inside.

The Selective Breeding Room

 bird room stainless steel sink
aviary selective breeding cages

The selective breeding room has 12 separate holding or dividable breeding cages.

Selective breeding gouldian finches is my preferred method for breeding gouldians.

The room also has a sink with 2 cupboards underneath, central door locking, an alarm system, a solar panel to recharge 4 x 18amphr batteries,internal low voltage down lights and an internal, external temperature gauge.
outdoor bird aviary solar panel on top of roof
The extreme temperatures that my aviary are exposed to are as follows: summer-46degrees Celsius(115 Fahrenheit) winter 1degrees Celsius( 34 Fahrenheit).

The solar panel keeps up with the power usage of the outdoor aviary quite easily.

Water dispensers and cleaning is all done at the internal sink.

At the rear of the aviary are twin 44 gallon plastic water drums.


The roof surface gathers plenty of water for all internal use as well as plenty of spare water for the plants and garden around the house.

Comments

  1. avatar Prasun Mondal says:

    Dear Sir/Madam,

    I have an Aviary (12’long 10’high 5’wide). Please tell me –
    How many pairs of LOVEBIRDS can I keep in the Aviary.

    Your kind advice will be highly appreciated.

    Thaking you,

    Prasun

  2. Hi Prasun. I am not too sure about lovebirds as I specialise in gouldian finches not parrots. Sorry

  3. avatar Abdellatif says:

    Good job… What about the insects? When outdoor…

  4. The outdoor section of the aviary is enclosed by wire mesh. Smaller insects can get into that section but that is outside and the finches are fine. The inside section of the aviary can be closed off from outside with the small sliding door if required.

  5. Where did you get your metal from? Building an outdoor aviary for parakeets/budgies but cannot find a place that will distribute caged metal commercially without having galvanized the product first.

  6. Hi Rahul. I bought my metal for the construction of the outdoor aviary from a company called Surdex steel in Melbourne.

  7. Hi. Can you please tell me how you affixed the wooden perches to the smooth walls, such as in the picture of the colony breeding room? Thanks!

  8. Hi Nicky. With the perches in the colony room I cut them a little bit longer so they would have a tight fit between the 2 walls. I placed them one at a time where I thought they were the most practical for the gouldians to perch, marked the wall at each end with a pencil then removed them.
    At each end I screwed in 2 screws with large flat heads on the pencil mark close enough together so the perch would sit on top of them nicely so they can not fall down. That,s it.
    Hope this helps.

  9. avatar Kristen says:

    What is the best flooring for an outdoor Aviary? I have been thinking of pouring concrete, but I can’t fathom the idea of fledglings smacking on such a hard surface.

  10. The best flooring is plywood like marine ply.

  11. Hello John I enjoyed reading about your aviary.
    I am building my own at the moment and very interested in your down light solar set up.
    What battery brand did you choose. Do you have a diagram on how to set the system up/
    Many thanks
    Ross

  12. Thanks for reaching out Ross. The down lighting is a standard low voltage halogen globe but now days you can use led down lights. The solar panel connects to a regulator which charges a standard 18AH sealed lead acid battery. Have a look online for the parts. There is lots of information available. Hope this helps.

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