"Failure to Launch" question

Home Forums Bluebird Chatter "Failure to Launch" question

Viewing 14 posts - 1 through 14 (of 14 total)
  • Author
    Posts
  • #4880
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    Good Morning! I have a question about my baby blues and fledging. Do the parents stop visiting the box as a way to coax them out? I have a box full of five babies who certainly should leave the nest in the next day or so. They have been peeking out a lot. Yesterday, mama and papa worked all day feeding the babies (as usual). They are a hungry pack! They make all kinds of noise every time the mama goes up to the house. Anyway, I haven’t seen either of the adults yet this morning (which is late for them). The tree swallows, whose box is on the same pole, have been busy all morning, but the bluebird house has been dormant other than an occasional baby peeking out of the hole. Is this normal? I get worried when I don’t see the parents.

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4881
    Scot
    Participant
    • Topics started 11
    • Replies 68
    • Total Posts 79

    Susan,

    I’ve observed that on the day of fledging the parents stop feeding and will sit close to the box and call to them to coax them out. Sometimes they will fly up to the box and peek in but not feed.

    Good luck!

    Scot
    PA

    #4882
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    Thank you very much! I feel better now. That must be what’s going on because I know this group is ready!

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4887
    Lisa
    Participant
    • Topics started 21
    • Replies 613
    • Total Posts 634

    So exciting Susan! Hope they are out!

    #4902
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    We had severe thunderstorms (even a tornado warning) from 1-3 p.m. today. The rain stopped around 4 o’clock, and I kept seeing that dear baby bluebird’s head peeking out of the hole, but no parents were in sight all day! Finally around 5:30, I saw the papa blue go into the house. He was in there for a few seconds and left. I had to leave for a while, so I am not sure if the parents came back at all. I know this is supposed to be part of the process, but it makes me nervous. How long can these babies go without food?

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4904
    nhhawk6nhhawk6
    Participant
    • Topics started 15
    • Replies 203
    • Total Posts 218

    Hi, Susan! All will be fine. Mama and Papa know what they are doing. It makes us nervous, and it makes us wonder, but the parents have got it all under control. My pair called for the nestlings to fledge for an entire day. The Cooper’s Hawk showed up, and the parents stopped calling for them and went back to feeding. Two days later, they fledged, without incident. And the whole time, mama and papa blue never asked for my opinion or for my advice. :)

    Randy
    Bedford, New Hampshire

    #4908
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    Thank you, Randy. I’m sure they will be fine. I saw papa at the box at about 6 a.m. I had to drive my son to work and walk my dogs, and now I don’t see any activity at the birdhouse. They may have gone. I’m not even seeing peeking. I put my ear to the house, but I don’t hear anything. Of course, I won’t risk looking in (but I would love to). The TRES babies in the house that is mounted on the same pole are still talking up a storm, so it’s hard to hear if there are any bluebirds still in there.

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4910
    Scot
    Participant
    • Topics started 11
    • Replies 68
    • Total Posts 79

    Susan,

    It happens very fast. Unless you are watching the box 24/7, you’ll likely miss it. If it’s day 16 or 17, they’re likely gone.

    Best of luck.

    Scot
    PA

    #4913
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    I think you’re right, Scot. I have been out working in the yard all day, and it’s like a ghost town around that bluebird house.

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4914
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    Okay, I have a totally new development. I came in the house for a drink, and when I looked out the window, I saw 3 TRES hovering in front of the bluebird house. One even landed at the hole and stuck his body half way in. Suddenly, the male bluebird chased him off and he landed and looked in the hole. Then he quickly left. I took a mechanic’s mirror and a flashlight in hopes of getting a peek inside the bluebird house. It is just too bright outside. I am able to slide the mirror into the house without lifting the lid by going through the air vents, but I just can’t get enough light from the flashlight to see anything. It didn’t help that 6 TRES started chattering and dive-bombing me. When I decided to give up, I looked up and saw mama blue on my house spouting and pap blue on a nearby pine tree. I’m not sure what’s going on.

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4915
    Scot
    Participant
    • Topics started 11
    • Replies 68
    • Total Posts 79

    What day is it for your bluebird nestlings? If it’s beyond day 17, they are likely gone and the TRES are checking out the box. The parent blues will still guard and be protective of the site in preparation for the next brood. Alternatively, you have a runt who hasn’t fledged.

    Scot
    PA

    #4916
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    It’s definitely beyond day 17. The papa blue has come back and looked in the house again, and mama is close by. Should I risk peeking in to see if there is a runt, or just let it be? The box was actually purchased for TRES because they were competing with my bluebirds for the bluebird house. Anyway, the box is larger and deeper than a typical bluebird house and it has a hinged roof.

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4918
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
    • Replies 184
    • Total Posts 207

    Okay, it is official. All of the bluebirds are off and running. I cleaned out the box this afternoon. I couldn’t believe how many cherry seeds there were in that nest! (but otherwise very clean). The male bluebird has been staying close by. I think he is feeling threatened by the TRES. I am leaving the sparrow spooker on the house a little longer because it is also protecting the TRES babies. I believe they should be flying the coop very soon as well.

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #4919
    tamsea
    Moderator
    • Topics started 26
    • Replies 699
    • Total Posts 725

    Glad everything worked out for you!

    Tammy

Viewing 14 posts - 1 through 14 (of 14 total)
  • You must be logged in to reply to this topic.