May 27, 2014
Yesterday morning just before the sun came up I started watching these bluebirds building a nest. I watched them for about an hour and took nearly 100 pictures. These pictures were taken thru the window glass so they are not as clear as I would like them to be. I was afraid raising the window would scare them away.
The female was gathering the nesting material and would fly back and perch a minute before entering into the house. Sometimes the female would hand off to the male nesting material and he would go inside.
Most of the time she was gathering and handling all the nesting materials herself. About every five minutes she would fly out of the house to gather more material, fly back and start all over again.
It seem like she would gather more pine needles than grass for the nest. On the above shot she couldn’t hardly get all of the material into the house.
Another beak full!
This is the second clutch or brood of the year for these bluebirds in this house and it is the fourth year that I have had bluebirds in this bluebird house. Last year I count 4 different broods in this bluebird house. They will usually lay 4 to 7 eggs the first brood but average is 4 to 5 eggs and toward the end of the season they will only lay 1, 2 or 3 eggs.
The male has the striking blue color!
I really enjoyed watching them build their nest and got some great pictures! I hope you enjoyed them as much as I did!
Do you have a bluebird house? Have you had bluebird nest in your house this year?
2013 Bluebird post:
It’s Bluebird Nesting Time Again
Bluebirds Eating Mealworms
Bluebirds and Mealworm Feeder
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It’s been more than a month now that I have been feeding mealworms to the bluebirds. At first it took me about a week to get them to the mealworm feeder. Initially I was using a tuna can on a small platform mounted on the side of my bluebird house post. Since then I have purchased a nice bluebird mealworm feeder from Birds Unlimited. This feeder is really nice, it has holes in the bottom of the cups to let water drain and it has a cover to keep out the sun and rain.
There are many other birds that are attracted to eating mealworms, they include, Robins, Wrens, Chickadees, Catbirds, Grackles, Woodpeckers, Grosbeakks, Sparrows, Brown Trhushers, Mockingbirds, Warblers, Finches, Orioles, Cardinals, Blackbirds and Nuthatches. There could be a few I missed.
Mealworms are available live and dried. I have been using live mealworms that I purchase from our local pet store. As you use more and more it can get expensive. After researching, I have now started raising my own mealworms and will plan on writing a blog on this later.
Last week I started moving the mealworm feeder pole closer and closer to the house two foot at at time. I am hoping to get the feeder in range for me to take some really nice pictures from the house.
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The Bluebirds are back! We have already had our first cycle brood of bluebirds this year and our second cycle is going on right now. If you have a bluebird house or nesting box in your yard, you might have seen some action around it lately. I certainly have. The male bluebird has been busy bringing little sticks, pine needles, etc. to the nest for a day of so. He is bringing the nest material to the hole, goes in and out, sometimes waving his wings while perched on the box. The female is hanging around but is just monitoring everything. The female does all the nest building.
Typical nesting season for our Eastern Bluebirds in south Carolina can have up to 3 nesting cycles per year. Dates may vary a bit with weather conditions and their food availability.
I will generally clean out the old nest of all my boxes late fall early winter but before mid January. In February the bluebirds return and begin looking for a mate and a nesting site. The males checks out potential nesting sites and then will find a mate.
Between March and April they begin to build the nest. April to May is generally they have their first brood. June to July the second cycle begins. This is where we are now. In August there can be a third brood.
If you provide plenty of food, the bluebirds will continue to come back. The Eastern Blue Birds will eat mostly insects, wild fruit and berries. Sometimes they have been spotted capturing and eating salamanders, lizards and tree frogs. They love live mealworms but will also eat dried mealworms. If you have space for a mealworm feeder, they are sure to enjoy it. I have had a hard time getting them to my mealworm feeder. Went thru 1000 live mealworms and never saw them go to the feeder once. It’s discourging but I am determined to get them eating mealworms.
I have seen them many times on my black sunflower seed feeder with the yellow finches. Check out the Bluebirds Easting Mealworms.