All-metal cages for birds are considered the best. They are more hygienic and durable, but their manufacture requires more skill. The cheapest and most common are cages with a wooden skeleton and iron rods, in which most granivorous birds are kept. The walls and top of these cells are made of iron wire with a diameter of 1.5 mm, reinforced in the holes of the wooden frame. For some shy birds that have a habit of flying up (larks, quails), the ceiling is pulled up with canvas.
For the manufacture of do-it-yourself bird cages dry boards 1–1.5 cm thick, iron wire (1.5 mm), nails and screws are needed.
The size of the cells depends on the motility, size and habit of the bird. For most small birds – Siskin, Carduelis, Bullfinch and other species close to them in size – 40x30x30 cm; for larks and quails – 40x40x30 cm; for a squid, blackbird, starling or a pair of budgies – 60x40x30. Each cage should have a retractable bottom for easy cleaning, which is best made from a sheet of galvanized iron with sides 2-3 cm high. The lower fixed bottom can be plywood.
In cages for budgies, squirrels, carduelis, and similar birds, the distance between the twigs should be no more than 1.5 cm, and for larger birds (blackbirds, quail, etc.) – 2 cm.
For an example, we will tell you how to make a cage for budgies. Planks of the following sizes are made from oak, beech or some other hard woods:
2 lower slats – 60x7x1 cm.
1 lower bar – 30x7x1 cm.
1 lower bar – 30x3x1 cm.
2 upper and 2 middle planks measuring 60 × 1.5 × 1 cm.
2 upper and 2 middle planks measuring 30×1.5 × 1 cm.
2 vertical bars measuring 40 × 1.5 × 1.5 cm.
Planks are planed, then marked for drilling holes for the wire at a distance of 1.5 cm from each other. Holes are drilled with a drill with a diameter of 1.2 mm to a depth of 6-10 mm in the lower trims, and through holes in the middle and upper trims.
The assembly is carried out in the following order: first the lower planks are knocked down, and the bottom of the plywood is beaten to them from below, then in each corner the bars with the lower planks are attached in vertical position, and the middle and upper planks are attached to the planks.
After the assembly of the frame, an iron wire grate is assembled, which is pushed into the holes drilled in the slats. When performing this operation, it is necessary to leave free gaps for the doors. The wires are tightened with pliers. The wire should go into the hole with effort, otherwise it will be weakly held. To better fasten it with the frame, the holes in the lower trims can be greased with glue.
After the manufacture of the lattice, a door is made. Holes in the door strips are drilled to half, and the extreme holes of one side are drilled through with a two-millimeter drill. The door is assembled from pre-sized iron wires that are inserted into the drilled holes of the slats. One of the wires of the iron grate is pushed into the holes with a large diameter, on this wire the door will move freely.
The finished cage can be cleaned from the outside with sandpaper and coated with alcohol varnish. Painting the cage both outside and inside is not recommended.
The retractable bottom should freely enter the slot, which is formed between the bottom and one of the lower slats of the frame.
Before settling the cage, pour clean river sand on the extendable bottom, hang inside the cage or put the feeders with food and a wate of water on the bottom of the cage. After that, you can let the bird.