Thursday, April 2, 2009

A waiting male bluebird

There's a male bluebird perched on a favored bluebird house at the edge of the Garden's meadows (at the botanical garden where I work) almost every morning now. I haven't looked in the box yet, but nesting activity should be well underway.

I normally would like to be monitoring the boxes weekly, but this spring has found many gardening programs, activities, and other non-bluebird tugs on my time.

Bluebirds thrive in the Garden's varied habitats of meadows adjacent to woods, and we've had bluebird boxes up for many years, recently replaced a couple of years back thanks to a Youth Build program based at our university.

We usually have 12-18 successful broods per year from our eleven Garden boxes, with occasional casualties due to black rat snakes (our boxes don't have baffles).

In our home landscape, we don't have the right habitat for bluebirds, although occasionally we'll see one investigate. They're lovely birds and have their populations have rebounded with increased placement of boxes to replace the lost natural cavities that they would otherwise use.

The bluebird image is from a Nature Conservancy birding journal -- quite nice. I wish I could credit the artist.

2 comments:

  1. I didn't have Bluebirds until I made sure the birdbath was always with water and I got a mealworm house. They are so blue! Still hoping they use the house I put up...last year chickadees used it.

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  2. We have a new bluebird house but I must get the birdbath replaced...it cracked and won't hold the water they need! I love the image you posted...folks are talented! gail

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