The Bluebirds are nesting early in 2012. Here you see one at my nut feeder. There are 4 in all that have been visiting my feeders for the past two weeks. Our Bluebird box is receiving a good deal of activity. This is early for them to start nesting but we’ve had a very mild winter. It’s in the 50′s today. I’m glad they are nesting early because it will give them a chance to get good and established before the wrens start their search for a home.
If our weather holds mild, we could see up to three nestings. Usually they lay 4 to 6 powdery blue eggs. Incubation last about 14 days. After hatching, they are in the nest about 16-22 days.
Everybody in the family feeds the babies. The parents keep the nest very clean. Mom will eat the shells after the babies hatch. They are certainly enjoying the peanuts we put out. They will eat bugs and nuts.
On the day that the last baby leaves the nest, remove the nest and clean the box with a solution of 1 part clorox to 10 parts water. Sometimes momma Bluebird will start her second nesting that very same day. You must hurry to clean the box between nestings. Discard the old nest far away from the current one in order not to attract predators.
It really is magical to see them visit and this year we seem to have a lot more.
In our area of North Carolina, Bluebirds do not migrate. If you feed them mealworms, they are most likely to stay in your area over the winter. Each year after the last nesting period they will just hang around and enjoy each others company. During nesting time they are fierce competitors.