Saturday, April 23, 2011

Bird House Tenants

All of the bird boxes are occupied for round one of the Bluebird/Tree Swallow nesting season. After checking all of the boxes, I found that instead of only one pair of nesting Bluebirds as I mentioned yesterday, there were actually two boxes that contained Bluebird nests. I my error came about by assuming that seeing a pair of Tree Swallows sitting atop the box meant that they were the owners. I don’t know what the Bluebirds were up to that they would let Tree Swallows have such easy access to their nest site.

There was really a lot of material used to create this nest. It’s possible that the base was started by another pair of birds and the Bluebirds stole the box and built their own nest on top. I’ll dissect the nest when I clean out the box to see if this was the case.

Four eggs so far. I would expect one more before brooding begins. It looks like the boxes are doing a good job of staying dry, despite the downpours that seem to occur every couple of days.

No eggs yet in the Tree Swallow nest, but it’s already looking dirty. I think the birds found some of the feathers that were cleaned out of the box last year and used them again. I don’t think I’ve ever seen that happen before. I know that Tree Swallows can really mess up a nest, but they should at least start with clean building materials.


  1. Don't they get upset when the landlord checks in during the nesting season?

  2. Hi, Lois. An occasional visit from the landlord is clearly stated in the lease, but the landlord is usually considerate enough not to visit at inconvenient times.

  3. Hello,

    Looks very pleasing. I'm building a birdhouse, and would like to attract some bluebirds.

    Please, what are the dimensions of the house, and the diameter of the opening?

    Thanks a lot!

  4. Hi Rodger,

    These boxes have floor dimensions of 5 X 5 inches and an inside height of 8.5 inches. A 1.5 inch hole is located about 7 inches up from the floor. There are many different Bluebird box designs. The boxes in the photos were made by the local FFA using plans available from the Ohio DNR at this site

    If there are Bluebirds in the area, they are usually quick to check out newly placed nest boxes.