Hollow Log Homes is a Queensland company dedicated to protecting and housing native Australian wildlife. They have been long-time users of CUTEK LowVOC and we recently spoke with founder, Alan Franks, to find out more about their business and why they choose CUTEK:
CUTEK: What is your background? How did you start Hollow Log Homes?
Alan: We started Hollow Log Homes by accident in 1999. My background was in teaching and construction however I have always been passionate about nature and the environment. One day a friend asked if I could make a hollow nesting box for a client. As I began to do research into hollow dependent fauna, I discovered that there are over 300 vetibrate species in Australia that use tree hollows for nesting, roosting and shelter; that is more than South Africa, the UK and the US combined! I also learnt that Australia had some of the slowest forming hollows in the world; even small natural hollows can take 80-100 years to form. Many of the nest box designs available came from Europe and were not suitable for our Australian animals and climate.
Stacey and I began researching the habitat needs of hollow dependent Australian fauna with government and university scientists to develop a comprehensive criterion for nest boxes for Australian native animals. A local landscape group who received a grant then employed us to install 200 nesting boxes and monitor them for 2 years. We wrote a report that was widely distributed and resonated with the scientific and environmental community. We have grown organically ever since and now have two full-time and three part-time employees.
CUTEK: What does Hollow Log Homes do?
Alan: We make nesting boxes for native Australian animals. We use top grade materials to produce quality nesting boxes for maximum longevity.
CUTEK: What makes Hollow Log Homes special?
Alan: We really care about the environment and native wildlife. We also bring integrity and passion to our business; we honesty love what we do.
Over the past 21 year we have made over 35,000 nesting boxes and have the data to show that our designs are successful with the target species. We are always researching and innovating to find ways to improve and provide a better habitat for Australian hollow dependent wildlife.
Education is an important part of our business ethos making people around Australia aware of native wildlife and how they can help Australian animals. We do workshops where we show how to build nesting boxes and teach the importance of retaining hollow bearing trees.
CUTEK: What services to you provide?
Alan: We manufacture, install and monitor nesting boxes and consult on habitat enhancement which often includes counting hollow bearing trees in specific areas, implementing nest box programs and reporting and analysing nest box data for audit purposes. Regarding monitoring and reporting, we have developed an invaluable database of hollow dependent wildlife and their nesting habits with over 2000 boxes being monitored each year.
CUTEK: Who are your main customers?
Alan: A large part of our business is supplying and monitoring nest boxes for local and state governments. We also play a role in environmental offsets for developers and major infrastructure projects. We help out private households too.
CUTEK: How did you come across CUTEK LowVOC and why did you start using it?
Alan: We started off using other timber coatings however they were not providing the protection we wanted and were also prone to mould. We then came across CUTEK’s LowVOC product that not only protected the timber but was also environmentally friendly. It has a great coverage rate and low toxicity; which is important as birds will chew the edges of the timber and may ingest any coating.
"It has a great coverage rate and low toxicity"
CUTEK: What are the benefits of CUTEK? How has it helped your business and customers?
Alan: Firstly, it really protects the timber. This is the best feature. We use plywood and cypress and apply CUTEK LowVOC to the face and end grain to help repel moisture. We make our boxes to last and CUTEK LowVOC helps us achieve this. Second, it is an environmentally friendly penetrating wood oil. This is really important for our business. Also, we found that it was really easy to use and was great from an occupational health and safety standpoint. It has little fumes and our staff have no reaction to CUTEK LowVOC. Lastly, the staff at CUTEK are always on hand to give advice and meet our needs. Each business has slightly different needs and CUTEK recognises that and helps out any way they can.
CUTEK: What problems have you found CUTEK solves for you in your business?
Alan: We use premium materials to make premium nesting boxes that will last a long-time and provide a great home for Australian wildlife. CUTEK fits in with our dedication to quality products and helps us meet our longevity promise. We have quite a few sites where we monitor boxes on a regular basis and we carry CUTEK LowVOC with us and apply it to any damaged area as needed. This simplicity of maintenance is a real plus. With our previous coating, there were instances where new boxes would arrive to the customer with mould on them. As you could imagine, this resulted in bad customer feedback. With CUTEK LowVOC, this isn’t an issue.
"CUTEK fits in with our dedication to quality products"
CUTEK: Do you use our colourtones?
Alan: Yes, we use Sela Brown. We want our nest boxes to fit into the natural surrounds as much as possible and we find Sela Brown does this best. It looks great too.
CUTEK: Where can someone get a hollow log home?
Alan: Contact us directly for a quote; email is best so that we have your details in writing. We ship all across Australia.
Phone: 07 5472 3142
Mobile: 0419 196 621
Address: 150 Chinaman Creek Road, Cambroon, QLD 4552
Be sure to check out the hollow log home website or facebook page for more information:
CUTEK is proud to partner with Hollow Wood Homes in providing quality homes for our beloved native AustralAlan wildlife.
When you need quality wood protection with a green star rating, use CUTEK LowVOC.