Presentation on theme: "Time To Fly The babies fledge when they are 16 to 20 days old. They will not return to the nest after their first flight. Monitors don’t open a box after."— Presentation transcript:
Time To Fly The babies fledge when they are 16 to 20 days old. They will not return to the nest after their first flight. Monitors don’t open a box after 12 days so they don’t cause premature fledging.
The fledglings are spotted for camouflage and are almost the same size as adults.
The parents teach the chicks to hunt for their own food.
They continue to care for the young. Within 6 weeks the fledglings will be self-sufficient.
In Virginia, bluebirds can raise 2 or 3 families each year. Once the chicks fledge, the monitor cleans out the nest box and the female bluebird begins a new nest.
Nest Boxes Help in Winter After nesting season, bluebirds flock and roost together to stay warm.
Bluebird Nest Boxes Are Not Just for Bluebirds Did you know that o ther native birds use bluebird nest boxes? All native birds are protected by federal law. They may use, and cannot be evicted from nest boxes. Take note:
Tree Swallows lay 4 to 7 white eggs in a cup nest of grasses with many feathers.
The chickadee and titmouse build a moss nest and lay tiny white eggs with brown dots. Photo by Scott Somershoe, USGS
House wrens construct a stick nest and lay 5 to 8 small tan, heavily dotted eggs.
Bluebird “How-To” Guidelines Do you want to be part of the bluebird movement? Here are the points to remember to attract and keep your bluebirds happy. Look for bluebird habitat. Bluebirds live in open areas with scattered trees. Get permission to install and monitor nest boxes.
Construct your box(es) Use a tested plan, like on the Virginia Bluebird Society (VBS) web site Don’t forget predator guards Grant money may be possible from VBS Five or more boxes can be a VBS “trail” but even 1 box is a benefit
Install your boxes Any time of year is OK, but install the boxes in fall or winter to get bluebirds for the next nesting season Mount the boxes 4 to 5 feet high, near (but not under) a tree or shrub Space the boxes 300 feet apart, (or use pairs 5 to 15 feet apart if you have tree swallows too) Face the boxes east Don’t put the box close to brushy wren habitat
Gather monitoring supplies (screw driver, soap, gloves, brush, etc.) Assemble a binder with monitoring forms, and helpful information for monitors Designate a trail leader and ensure that all monitors know VBS procedures for monitoring Monitor weekly April through August
Success! Report monitoring data to VBS at the end of the nesting season To keep your bluebirds happy … provide water and possibly mealworms as a snack And the bluebirds will be back!
For more information, contact The Virginia Bluebird Society http://www.virginiabluebirds.org
Credits We would like to thank the following individuals for the photos used in this presentation Helen Ellis Myrna Pearman Dave Thomas Bob Gibson Greg Bishop All photos are copyrighted and cannot be reproduced, copied or distributed without permission of the photographer. This presentation is a product of the Virginia Bluebird Society and is intended for educational purposes only.