By Al King
In my previous blog entry, I described the Sunburst western bluebird program. At that time I had just repaired and cleaned the nest boxes. Next, I put up one more box making a total of nine nest boxes.
Spring is a very busy time for me here at the Sanctuary. In previous years I had not managed to monitor all the boxes. This year I did look into four of them during the nesting season. One of these was near my house, so I made the time to take some photographs inside that box.
On May fourth there were five eggs in the nest. Checking the box again on May 17th, I found the eggs had hatched—probably a week or so before— and the young birds were growing feathers. The birds were larger and more developed each time I looked in (May 20 and May 24). On May 28th I saw one of the babies looking out the door of the box. It was only a few more days until the nest box was empty. We are now seeing more bluebirds in our neighborhood.
It’s wonderful to see all the insect-eating bluebirds here at the Sanctuary. Of the four boxes I checked during nesting time this year, they all had babies. Three of these were the bluebirds that we had put the nest boxes out for. The last one I checked was another species of insect-eating bird. Keep an eye out for my next blog post with the description and photos of the unexpected parents and babies.