Falconry Equipment

The Bolt-together Mews

This is basic bolt-together mews made of 2x4 frame construction, instead of a more standard 2x2.  I've built both and the 2x4 is much sturdier.  I also used a lot more bolts to hold this one together- 7 on the 8' back sections and 6 on the 7' front sections. Bolts were 1/4" diameter- I've found that this gives plenty of strength and doesn't require such a large hole as to weaken the wood.  The bars are spaced 2" apart and on this mews, the windows are "modular".  If you notice, there are two 2x4's on the window on both top and bottom- 1 is the frame and the other is the window.  This way, I can remove a few screws, slide the entire window out, and slip in a solid section or repair a bar, if necessary.  The double thickness also adds a lot of stability to the structure.  The hawk house is lag-bolted to 4x4 landscape timbers which are held in the ground with 18" long rebar pieces.  My main element enemy here on the Plains is wind- if you live in the south or east, you may need to worry more about moisture than wind, and build a foundation accordingly.

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This is a closeup of the corner junction.  Notice that the side sits down inside the side walls- this lets you bolt the two together, w/out going thru the long end of a 2x4.  The front needs to be dropped the thickness of the roof to make everything sit nice and flush.  If you build your corners like this, it's an easy matter to then overlay steel or aluminum panels on the roof (and these will really lock the mews down tight and solid!).  I use 2 bolts per 4' width on the front and back and 2 on each side panel (for a total of 4 bolts).  When bolting the roof panels together inside, I use 5 bolts, with 1 in the center, but the others having the same spacing.   If all the spacing is the same, then panels are totally interchangeable with each other.  You can, for instance, move the door panel to the far left, far right, or center, thus giving a great deal of flexibility should the mews space need to be expanded.   On this 20' long mews, I can put 2 dividers in the middle, each with their own door leading into a chamber and a door to the outside and have two 8' x 8' chambers with a 4' safety chamber in between.  Or if, I have only 1 bird, I can put 1 divider on the next to last panel, move the door to the last panel and have a single 16' chamber with a 4' safety chamber.  For smaller birds, I could reverse this and use the smaller section as the mews.  Or I could make 1 of the chambers dark for training purposes and the other open.  There's a lot of flexibility, and I can unbolt this mews and move around if need be.

mews_corner.JPG (51150 bytes)

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