Building or buying a bird house is a great way to add nesting habitat for birds in your backyard. Even small backyard spaces can be used by House or Carolina Wrens, or others depending on habitat on or near your property. Watching the progression of the nesting behavior, and finally watching fledglings leave the nest, is a fantastic reward for your efforts. The Missouri Department of Conservation offers detailed instructions for building several types of bird houses: Barn Owl, Wren, and Eastern Bluebird. Or, click on a picture below to learn more. While each bird house is slightly different, there are some general guidelines to follow to may increase the likelihood that a ird will use your house. Do some research on the behavior and the habitat of the bird you want to attract and then build your house accordingly. For example, some birds, like the Eastern Bluebird, prefer to nest in open areas. It is also recommended to place bluebird houses on a post with a baffle (ring of aluminum to keep predators out) between 4-5 feet off the ground.
Visit Cornell Lab of Ornithology's NestWatch page about birdhouses for lots of great information.