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Hooray! Bluebirds!

Posted by dottie_in_charlotte z7-8 NC (My Page) on
Mon, Jan 23, 12 at 19:36

I moved this past fall and I was saddened to leave my woods and gardens I'd labored over for 8 years.
I could take and transplant my favorite plants but I was leaving behind several pairs of bluebirds that were yearround to my yard and forest.
Those sudden patches of bright blue always managed to catch the eye and cheer everyone up.

I set out the bird feeders right away and in two weeks they were emptied by all the common birds.
I'd read that the hulls of sunflower seeds has a detrimental effect on plant growth so since the feeders were above an area I planned as garden, I bit the bullet,spent the bucks and bought a sack of hulled sunflower seeds.

Turns out, hulled sunflower seeds is one of the few human provided foods a bluebird will eat.
Long story short, I have bluebirds here too and they'll come right up and eat from the feeder as I sit less than 6' away. Mostly males, brilliant blue with rosy chests.

So I'm cheered...what cheers up your day , especially these damp,dismal rainy, cold days?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Hooray! Bluebirds!

Thanks for sharing these experiences. We have bluebirds, too, and I am always excited to see them as they begin building the new nests.

I am cheered when I see new growth each year. Right now I have toothwort, a few Trilliums, and a couple of spring beauties appearing.

When I am not traveling, I try to walk outside a little every day, in spite of cold and wet, to check and see what is coming up. Mother Nature never fails to surprise and entertain.

RE: Hooray! Bluebirds!

I moved this fall and since it was a long time rental, there doesn't seem to be any surprises in store except for a badly located young peony and a bed of what are probably himalayan or japanese iris.
Trilliums are so pretty. Have to go google toothwort.

RE: Hooray! Bluebirds!

Whew..the more I googled sites through the GardenWeb 'bluebirding' forum, the more depressing it got.

Now we are supposed to protect bluebirds from the common house sparrow/English sparrow.
Not bad enough you have to worry about snakes getting into nesting boxes but the house sparrows sound positively like murderers of both the chicks and the parent.

So, I've given up on the birdhouses idea.
If the bluebirds are here and have been here all the time, they know where to nest.
I'll just have the feeder in the winter.

RE: Hooray! Bluebirds!

We had one brood in May, 5 eggs, 3 baby bluebirds who have been coming back. A little later momma bluebird nested again, laid one egg & next day we found it on the ground - a wren! We left town for 2 weeks & when we got back, momma & daddy were at nest box again. She laid 4 eggs & has been sitting on them for 8 days (we put up a wren guard after first egg). Yesterday I was going to check on eggs & two of them were on ground in front of box & a bird flew out of nest with an egg in mouth. The momma went back in box and sat on the one egg for awhile but we haven't seen her since yesterday afternoon. Has she just abandoned the egg? Guess we should have put up a sparrow spooker - we are sick about this! Do you think they will come back?

RE: Hooray! Bluebirds!

In 2012, the bluebirds were displaced of their feeding ground by phoebes. The phoebes are of similar size but much more efficient 'on the wing' bug catchers because they have an ability to hover briefly and change direction mid-air. Not as vocal as bluebirds that have soft conversant tones. Phoebes here are gray with cream breast/bellies. One pair did two full nesting with broods of 4 and 3 from a messy nest on a nook of the porch roof (a well covered but very narrow ledge). The chicks seemed to fledge faster than bluebird chicks and the chicks stayed together and called to attract the parents.
Of that second brood, only one fell out to doom on the brick steps below and it was probably only a few days to a week old. (now I have to go with the hose sprayer and get the nest cleaned out) Phoebes are interesting to watch but the bluebirds will be back in fall/winter/early spring.

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