Bluebird Update 5.14.13

As of Tuesday (5/13/13) there were three empty nest boxes. The nestlings that had once occupied them have fledged.

The “Cow Pasture” nest box is empty. Since this photo was taken, it has been cleaned and is ready for a new nest (5/13/13).

Take a close look at the nest below which is located at the Bungee Jump. The five nestling chickadees that were once crowded into this nest are gone, fledged. I didn’t have a chance to clean the nest box after the chickadees had fledged before a bluebird built a nest on top of the old nest. The left arrow points to the old chickadee nest, the right arrow, the bluebird nest.

The Bungee jump nest (5/13/13).

The chickadees that have taken up residence in the nest box behind the Sail Boat Pond have not, as I had predicted last week, added to their clutch size, it’s still four eggs. Four eggs is better than none. The more chickadees in this world the merrier, so we’ll take the four.

This nest had a late start due to bees, wrens and who knows what else, and it only has four eggs, but no complaining here (5/14/13).

The Amphimeadow nest box has been refurbished and now has two eggs within.

Will there be more eggs next week? I hope so (5/14/13).

The first thing that I saw as I neared the nest box next to the Picnic Dome was a chickadee flying into the entrance hole with food in its bill.

“There must be hungry young inside that box,” I said to myself.

An adult chickadee prepares to exit after delivering food to the nestlings inside (5/14/13).

As I opened the nest box I saw five miniature chickadees.

Five nestlings greeted me as I opened the Picnic Dome nest box (5/14/13).

It’s difficult to say whether or not these chickadees will fledge by next week, they’re still rather small. I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Last week the Butterfly House nest held three nestlings. The week before I counted four nestlings. Had the fourth fledged just before my arrival last week? I hope so. But whatever happened, they were all gone when I opened the nest box this week. They probably fledged as I walked away from them last week.

An empty nest. It has since been cleaned and is ready to go again (5/14/13).

Here’s where we stand. We now have three empty nests, that is, three nest with no eggs or nestlings. Since last week, The Cow Pasture, Bungee Jump, and Butterfly House nests have all fledged their occupants. Four bluebirds fledged from the Cow Pasture, 3 or 4 from the Butterfly House nest, and 5 chickadees have flown the coop at the Bungee Jump nest. Two of those nest boxes have been cleaned and readied for new nests, the other has had a bluebird nest built over the old chickadee nest (Bungee Jump). The Sail Boat Pond nest contains four chickadee eggs, the Amphimeadow nest has 2 bluebird eggs, and the nest at the Picnic Dome has five chickadee nestlings. Phew, that was mouthful, and maybe a bit confusing!

If you are confused, here’s the lowdown of what’s going on inside our 6 nest boxes:

Seven or eight bluebirds fledged since last week.

Five chickadees fledged since last week.

There are currently 2 unhatched bluebird eggs.

There are currently 4 unhatched chickadee eggs.

There are currently 5 chickadee nestlings.

There are currently three nest boxes with no eggs or nestlings, one of which contains a new bluebird nest (nest material in box). Two of those nest boxes have no nest material.

Got it?

See you next week!

2 responses to Bluebird Update 5.14.13

  1. judy Overby says:

    Greg, do you know what the white material in the Picnic Dome Chickadee nest consist of. It looks very much like the white, fluffy stuff we are finding all around our yard. We don’t know where it is coming from and would certainly like to know.

    • Greg Dodge says:

      Chickadees use fur, feathers, or other soft fibers to top off their nests but I don’t know exactly what that is in the Picnic Dome nest. It may even be synthetic. I’ll grab a piece of it Tuesday when I have a peek inside.

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