John MacDuffie Woodburn

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UrBird Concept

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Connecting Nature to People

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Nestworks balances the urban ecology



Urbird is a project in creating Nestworks for urban birds of Pittsburgh by using a series of ready-mades and constructed nest boxes from found materials in the area. Nestworks is an urban planned network of nesting areas for birds. The Nestworks will provide attractive urban sites for bird breeding in the ubran environment. A guide is being created for these Nestworks will be provided to the urban bird watchers and the locals.


Creating Nestworks for native birds in Pittsburgh will allow for a declining population to regain strength again.


Urbird project is doing a pilot nestwork system for the American Kestrel. The American Kestrel is a great candidate for repopulation because it likes to live in urban areas and feed off the small rodents, insects and pests like the house sparrow, that live in the city. Pittsburgh is an excellent city because it is native to both areas, and both cities have rivers nearby for water. Since it is one of the smallest birds of prey, the man-made nest boxes can be relatively easily build and because it usually nests lower to the ground than most birds of prey, mounting them won't be as much of an issue. Pod casting hotspots will be used to inform and engage the public about the importance of biodiversity.



A workshop was held on the roof of the Gershman Y at the UArts in Philadephia in 2010 to build birdhouses for the American Kestrel. A total of 8 nest boxes were designed and built at the end of the workshop that will be incorporated into the Nestwork system of UrBird.





Biodiversity Project 2010: UrBird.
In collaboration with Michael Barakat and Gabriel McMorland.