First Time In Four Years
As I have mentioned before in my Dark Legacy post, for the last four years or so I have had a bluebird pair with some type of genetic defect. This theory was backed up when Julie Zickefoose suggested I crack open an unhatched egg and confirm there was no viable chick in it. They would build a nest in my box, lay eggs and then the heartbreak began. Without predation, some of each clutch of eggs would just not hatch. Then, of the two or three that did, only one and rarely two would actually fledge.
I have been careful to completely clean out the box each time between clutches of eggs but the pattern continued.
All that changed this year.
For the first time since this saga continued I had five eggs that all hatched and fledged from the nest. I am ecstatic over this. I can only conclude that one of the pair must have died and was replaced by a healthy bird.
Like I’ve said before, it’s not that I don’t appreciate having any bluebirds in my backyard. It took me three years before that even happened. I just want to make sure that I’m helping them increase their numbers by actively discouraging competing birds and seeing large clutches of eggs hatch and fledge.
How Are Your Boxes Doing This Year?
Leave me a comment below and let me know if you’re having success with your nesting boxes this year or if you’ve had a similar experience.