Using recycled materials greatly helps the environment by reducing waste and keeping said materials out of landfills. It takes about 25 to 40 plastic milk jugs to produce a recycled bird house or feeder. These blue bird houses are NABS approved, (North American Bluebird Society) and create the perfect nesting site for Eastern Bluebirds. With such a large shortage of natural nesting cavities, why would a great nest site like this be vacant?
Several factors will deem successful habitat for birds, and pesticides are detrimental in successful clutches. Environment plays the biggest role in attracting birds, and while everything may be super green and manicured in your yard, it may not be good for your avian friends. Ingested through insects fed by adults, pesticides wreak havoc on developing nestlings. Although sometimes not harmful to the adults, they are deadly to nestlings. If clutches in an area repeatedly fail, the bluebirds are likely to abandon the spot and seek other habitat.
Predators will also discourage nesting. Roaming cats, raccoons, snakes and larger bully birds will drive bluebirds from a possible nest site. House Sparrows and Starlings (both non-native species) will kill adult bluebirds in the nest box, as well as nestlings, and even destroy eggs too. Unfortunately this is common practice. These invasive and destructive birds are likely the main cause for the bluebird’s demise in the 70’s and 80’s. Ever-shrinking natural habitat with fierce competition for available nest sites being the reason.
•Be sure that blue bird houses are erected in proper habitat. Open spaces are preferred, with perching spots for hunting insects.
•Predator guards on bluebird houses also increase chances of successful fledging.
•Keep roaming cats indoors, or ask your neighbor to keep their cat out of your yard.
•Fresh water will entice bluebirds and others.
•Remove old nests (away from the area) after birds have fledged. A blue bird house with an old nest will not be used by another pair of bluebirds seeking a nest box.
•Supplemental feeding (with live mealworms) helps parents raise their young.
•Absolutely… quit the pesticides.