For people looking for more attractive ways of keeping their birds, I suggest trying this geodesic structure. I keep pheasants in mine. What will you keep in yours?
Starplates are a geodesic building system offered by Stromberg’s a U.S. poultry supply company. They will ship this system to Canada, which is where I am. They are one of my favorite choices for aviary construction, as they are sturdy, economical, and look impressive. A Starplate structure is said to be able to withstand ten thousand pounds of downward pressure, which is good when building aviaries near large trees. Construction with this system is fast and fairly simple provided you take your time and measure properly. In fact, a couple of people with the right tools, and a bit of imagination, can create a beautiful sturdy aviary in a day or two.
Depending on your local climate Starplate aviaries can be used for everything from smaller soft bills, to chickens, to ornamental pheasants. A Starplate aviary even will make a excellent home for reptiles such as iguanas, or smaller monitors, in warmer climates. Hard bill birds such as parrots will require additional features for safety and security that I will not be covering.
What You Get And What You Need
What you get with the Starplate Building System is a set of 11 Starplate connectors. The connectors are good quality metal plates and their price plus shipping is reasonable. What you will need to get is 25 2X2s, 2X3s, or 2X4s, depending on the size of structure you are planning on building. The sizes of these pieces of lumber can be up to 9′ in length using this system.
Anything larger is not recommended with Starplates. For aviaries larger is better. For my Starplate aviaries I have used 8′ 2X4s. In addition to the lumber you will need to purchase 50 each of nuts, bolts, and washers according to the size of the structure you are going to build. You will need some additional pieces of lumber for construction of doors or if you want to add additional horizontal support struts.
The structure will need to be covered completely with a wire mesh, not plastic or fabric. For larger birds such as pheasants you can use 2″ stucco wire which is inexpensive. For medium sized birds you can use poultry wire, for smaller birds, such as finches, or for reptiles you will need to use a hardware cloth or good quality poultry wire. Make sure it is galvanized or PVC coated to prevent rusting over time. To attach the wire mesh to the structure you will need either U nails or the appropriate size of good quality staples.
Published in: Rural Living