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Student creates ‘Ikea of bird boxes’

A Bermudian student has created “the Ikea of bird boxes” to provide easy-to-build homes for bluebirds.

Christian Chin-Gurret, 20, said his Bermudian Bluebird Box can be put together in a matter of minutes without tools, glue or nails.

He said: “Most bird boxes I found use nails, and if you hit them wrong they really mess up.

“This is something that can be put together by a kid in under ten minutes with just a simple instruction manual. You can also take it apart and paint each section because it's easy to assemble.”

Mr Chin-Gurret said he developed the concept during his studies at Bangor University in Wales.

He said: “As part of my course we do work placement every year. This year I worked at a caravan company.

“They asked if I could design, with the scrap wood, a bird box that doesn't need nails or glue and can be put together in ten minutes.

“I thought it was a good idea and I could take it out, expand the business, try something new and let other people enjoy this bird box.”

Mr Chin-Gurret turned his focus to the project this summer as part of the Bermuda Economic Development Corporation's first Summer Student Entrepreneur Programme.

He said he has since met with Stuart Smith, a local bluebird expert, about modifying the design to make sure it fit the local environment.

Mr Chin-Gurret said: “Mr Smith thought it was a great concept. We will be using marine ply, which is good without even being painted, and adding side vents to ensure circulation.”

Once the design is completed, he plans to sell the bird boxes at Harbour Nights and in Dockyard on the weekends, and has partnered with local suppliers and CNC Carpentry on the project.

He hopes to expand the business internationally in time.

Mr Chin-Gurret said: “My plan is after this to use the money I make from these bird boxes to expand it overseas and get more people interested in birds.

“It's a flat-pack bird box that is easy to ship and that anyone can put together.”

He added: “This bird box is the ‘Ikea' of bird boxes. It offers the family and owners an experience of easily building a home for their feathered friends.”

Mr Chin-Gurret said he had enjoyed building birdhouses while in school in Bermuda and he hoped the project would help introduce more young people to the great outdoors.

He said: “It's always good to get the younger generation more interested in the environment.

“You see a lot of people of my generation indoors and on the computers, but it's good to get more people outdoors and invested in seeing things instead of seeing the videos.

“When I started doing this, I realised I don't see much advertising or publicity about birds, so I thought it could be something to get them more engaged in the environment.”

Bird box in the hand: Christian Chin-Gurret with his easy-to-build bluebird box (Photograph supplied)

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Published July 26, 2018 at 9:00 am (Updated July 26, 2018 at 12:57 am)

Student creates ‘Ikea of bird boxes’

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