Our Eastern Bluebirds arrive here in the northeast in May when weather has started to warm, and nights are no longer frigid. Since they are naturally docile and non-aggressive, invasive English sparrows tend to cannibalize their babies and move into their nest boxes without as much as a peep from the native bluebirds. So keep a wary eye out for this kind of activity, and remove the sparrow’s nest to discourage them.
Get Ready For Your Blue Birds to Arrive:
- These little guys love insects, so the first rule is to never use toxic insecticides!
- Provide wooden bird houses hung on metal garden stakes or posts, at the height of 5 feet off the ground. The entrance hole should be between 1-1/4″ to 1-1/2″ in diameter. Look for nest boxes made especially for them.
- They also love fruit: Plant holly and elderberry bushes, making sure there are male and female plants to produce the berries coveted by these lovely birds. You may also wish to plant strawberries and blueberries or raspberries, which are among their favorite foods.
- Bluebirds like wide open spaces, so imitate their native habitats which are wildflower fields and pastures with fence posts for cavity nesting, and large trees around the perimeter of the area.
Keep in mind these fields do not have to be large. But they should provide lots of native blooms like brown-eyed susans, and purple coneflowers that attract loads of beneficial insects. My wildflower ‘field’ is approximately 6′ x 10′ because that is all the space I have. As small as it is, birds and insects still abound.
- Plant a vegetable garden. Make your feathered visitors happy by installing vinyl wire fencing between the posts so they can perch and watch for their next meal, as well as make sure there aren’t any nearby predators.
- Give them a grassy patch of lawn that will provide lots of insects on which they can feast. If you wish, you can forego mowing this patch until it is 4″ or more tall. That will give your bluebirds lots of foraging opportunities. Again, this lawn area need not be huge if you don’t have the space available.
- Install a large bird bath with a ‘bubbler’ –something they cannot resist. As with many birds, these guys love to take baths and drink from clean water sources fairly low to the ground. The larger size will accommodate several bluebirds at once, since they love to socialize in small groups. The ‘bubbler’ mimics the sound of a brook, and acts as a natural attractant.
- Offer suet containing insects or fruits. Another treat, which is also known as bluebird candy, mealworms can be served in a specialized feeder or on a platform feeder. Also provide black oil sunflower seeds, which are another favorite food.
These voracious insect eaters will help control your bug population without having to use poisons. Enjoy their naturally sweet songs, and beautiful color, and you will see why it is said that they ‘wear the sky on their backs and the sun on their chests’!
Connie Smith is the proud owner and manager of Grandma Pearl’s Backporch, LLC, and the expert author of many online articles about easy and unique ways you can create the best bird-friendly habitats to help wild birds survive and thrive.
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Article Source: EzineArticles.com