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My Bluebirds Have Made A Nest

Update 5/15/10: The feeding frenzy finally came to an end so I thought I’d check the box today.  As far as I can tell all 5 bluebirds successfully hatched and fledged the nest.  I’ll have another post this week about it as this is an historic moment in my bluebird stewardship!

Update 4/27/10: I think I see 5 little heads waiting to be fed.  I’ll check back again this week and update again.  This is good news because my previous genetically-challenged pair could not get all eggs to hatch to start with.

Update 4/20/10: There are now 5 eggs in the nest.  I’ll be watching the nest closely over the next week to 10 days to make sure they all hatch.  Hatching has been a problem with the previous clutches as well as surviving to fledge the nest.

I’ll keep you posted.

After seeing a flurry of activity in the nest box closest to my house, I took a peek yesterday and saw that the bluebirds have built a fine nest.  Curiously, the downy woodpecker that’s been using it as an overnight roost is still going in there every night.

Talk about living dangerously!

I’m sure that will all change once she gets any eggs in the box.

I’ll keep you posted and see if I can’t get a picture of the full nest box once she’s laid her eggs in it.

I really hope it’s not the exact same couple that has been returning every year that have been so unsuccessful at increasing their numbers.

Have your bluebirds or chickadees selected their nest boxes yet?  Leave me a comment below and tell me about it.


10 Responses to “My Bluebirds Have Made A Nest”

  1. Eve says:

    I had a pair of bluebirds make a nest in the bluebird box and the female laid 4 eggs. I came out today and noticed that 3 of them were broken on the ground. I thought it might be a House Sparrow so I put up a spooker for the last egg. The bluebirds never came back today and then I saw a House Wren pull out the last egg and nesting material. I cleaned out the box and moved it hoping that I could attract the bluebirds again but that Wren found the box and is busy bringing in nesting material. I’m not sure if I should discourage this. This is my first experience with nesting boxes and I was really hoping to have a bluebird family. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. I also have another box which I moved also hoping that the bluebirds would find that one while the Wrens were using the first one. Thanks, Eve from Maryland

  2. BirdDude says:

    Hi Eve,

    I had house wrens in one box and bluebirds in the other box in my backyard last year. When I first saw the house wrens building I contacted Julie Zickefoose who is a phenomenal writer, artist and bird rehabiliator and she told me to let the house wrens build their nest. She said that stopping them from doing so puts the other nesting birds in your backyard at risk. I followed her advice and the house wrens nested and fledged their young without bothering the bluebirds. I do not have a huge backyard either.

    In short, don’t make the house wrens mad.

    You would probably do well to put your other box a good distance away from the house wrens since the bluebirds have decided that your yard is a good place to nest. Try to re-create as closely as possible things like: distance from box to trees because they want to feel like they can flee there to safety if needed without feeling like squirrels or other animals can jump down on it. That way, the wrens and bluebirds should be able to live in peace.

    If you don’t want another box in your yard then just enjoy watching the house wrens build and sing and raise their young. More than likely they won’t return next year. I know mine haven’t been seen since they left last summer. I would just take down the other box if nothing else has shown an interest in it.

    Feel free to ask me anything else you like. I actively discourage nuisance/competing birds in my backyard and have been very successful at it. I hope to have a free or low cost report on how I’ve done it available before fall.

    Thanks for stopping by and I look forward to hearing back from you.

    Jeff

  3. Eve says:

    Thanks so much for your reply. It was really helpful and put me at ease. That little wren is very determined. I even moved the box in the middle of his nest building so I could watch his antics more clearly from the house. He came back with a stick in his mouth quite confused but after a minute, went right back into the house. I haven’t seen the bluebirds again but am hopeful they will visit the other box. Good luck with your little families. Eve

  4. BirdDude says:

    Eve,

    My first clutch has fledged as of yesterday. I’ll be cleaning the box out soon and hope they’ll come back for the next round.

    The house wrens were one of my best surprises last year. Moving the box closer to watch them was a great idea. They are a hoot when they’re not feeling threatened.

    Do let me know how you make out with them and if any bluebirds come back this spring/summer.

    Best,

    Jeff

  5. […] we birders have to witness things that break our hearts. Nestlings getting killed by birds competing for the space. Seeing the odd bird dead on the side of the road […]

  6. Kathleen says:

    Hello, We moved to inverness, Fl last 2015 and built nesting boxes for the bluebirds. All the houses had 2 nestlings last season we were so thrilled. This season not a one. We noticed a wood pecker had made the holes bigger. We fond a baby flying squirrel in to of the boxes. I an so disappointed by this time last year we were on our 2nd set of nests. We find 3 blue birds nest upon our doorway stones that stick out is that unusual for Bluebirds to do? I kind of think it is good luck that they feel safe inside our doorway.
    Kathleen

  7. BirdDude says:

    Hi Kathleen,

    Thank you for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave such an excellent comment!

    Could you possibly send a quick picture of these nests to help at birdoculars.com?

    The place you’re describing sounds more like where a robin or mockingbird would build a nest and not a bluebird. They are usually very particular about where they nest and I’ve not heard of them nesting any place that was not well closed off.

    By the way, I have a bluebird box that has been out every year for the last almost ten years. Some years, the chickadees beat the bluebirds to it. Other years, the other way around.

    Jeff

  8. Kathleen says:

    How do I send pictures?

  9. Kathleen says:

    Sorry for the spelling on the above post. We have 2 -3 bluebird that roost over our doorway sorry not nesting. How would I send pictures. cant seem to be able to post to website

  10. BirdDude says:

    Hi Kathleen,

    To send me a picture if you have a smartphone, you can snap the pictures, select them and there should be a way to tap on an icon that shares or emails. You then put help@birdoculars.com as the email address you’re sending it to, put in any subject and you should be able to send them to me from there.

    Could you put them up on Facebook?

    Some digital cameras have a way to send them directly.

    If you need any more help, feel free to ask me. There is no way for anybody to upload a picture directly to the site.

    I will say that it is very odd for bluebirds to even roost in a place you’re describing. I’ve got to see this to believe it-LOL!

    Jeff

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