Getting impatient

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This topic contains 15 replies, has 5 voices, and was last updated by David in Stafford,VA David in Stafford,VA 1 month, 2 weeks ago.

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  • #7516
    phillyblues
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    The male came by again this morning singing on trees and peeking in my box, but no nest yet. Wondering if I should replace the box with a new one different style or something. Something to get them excited to start a nest. The current one is a cedar box from Walmart. Any suggestions to entice?

    https://i5.walmartimages.com/asr/debe8aae-aa81-4779-bf78-99bcd7092d43_1.4368b7d01ec4bfc75ba2558cf9612955.jpeg?odnHeight=450&odnWidth=450&odnBg=FFFFFF

    #7517
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
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    The only thing I can think about is this: cedar boxes are great BUT they probably should be allowed to “age” to rid it of cedar smell. I had read somewhere that the blues (& probably other birds) do not always like a brand new box. I remember I had read this somewhere 11 years ago when we made our first boxes – made them in the fall I believe & then let them age outside until the next spring when I had my first nesting. But this may not be the problem here, but could be. Is your box a new one? Also, if they have already started a nest this might not be the problem at all – takes them sometimes some time to build a nest and then sometimes they build it quickly. Like Gin says, depends on the pair. Hope they finish it so you can relax – good luck!

    #7518
    Sassy
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    Hi phillyblues:
    I know the exact box you are talking about and I had no trouble with the Bluebirds accepting the new cedar box from Walmart the first year I put it up.
    A friend of mine has had BB’s every year for last 16 years, her husband ordered a new box from Duncraft?? And they absolutely refuse to use it, so no BB’s for her this year even though the BB’s investigated it.
    One silly question, is if faced in the right direction? Just had to ask.
    Connie (PA)

    #7520
    phillyblues
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    The box is facing northish. Funny, I have two walmart boxes, an old one and a new one. The one they seem interested in is the old one. The other one is facing west. I DID just notice a wasp going in the one they’re interested in AN HOIR AGO. Wonder if it was in there while they looked. Hmmm. And i left a ill fated unspoiled tree swallow nest in the other box. Maybe they’ll get serios on my wedding anniversary which is Sunday. That woild be a nice gift! Haven’t seen them since this morning. But I remember when the swallows made a nest there was a period of time they weren’t around. It’s been really hot here in the philly burbs the past couple days. I really appreciate all the responses though. Thanks, all.

    #7523
    blue diamondsblue diamonds
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    Phillyblues….That would be a great anniversary gift‼️ They might even use the swallow nest and put their finishing touches on it. Check both boxes for bees and ants. Good luck and Happy Anniversary.

    Judy-Michigan

    #7524
    phillyblues
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    Thanks, Judy! God willing!

    #7526
    phillyblues
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    Papa back again this morning…came, sang, checked out the boxes, sung some more, left. Grrrr.

    #7527
    blue diamondsblue diamonds
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    Still sounds promising……one other issue…could be they already are nesting close by? Or maybe there is another nest within 300 feet. The best direction is East. We’ll keep our fingers crossed! Good luck.

    Judy-Michigan

    #7528
    phillyblues
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    I guess they could be but they seemed pretty excited a few days ago. There is a golf coirse a half block away so I suppose they may have finally put up bluebird boxes there. Selfishly hoping not…

    #7529
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
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    All good points above – especially about how the box faces. AWAY from the prevailing winds is what is suggested to face a box – in my area (mid Missouri) this is southeast, as we always have strong winds from the south and north & sometimes from the west, hardly any from the east. Bees are controlled by rubbing soap on the inside of the top of the box. Ants are controlled by greasing your pole with a heavy grease (like axle grease). I usually put some at the bottom of the steel pole up to about 2 feet and then right underneath the box, about a 2-3 inch band around pole. If they make it from the first greasing area they won’t be able to make it up to the box itself. One year I forgot to do this & had ants invade the nest with eggs in it and had to do a nestbox change – not fun with eggs involved. Don’t forget http://www.sialis.org is our bible here and has great info on all this. Good luck. P.S. I guess most boxes in stores would have cedar odor already gone, but fresh built ones really have that cedar smell.

    #7532
    phillyblues
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    • Topics started 23
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    Came and went again this morning. Stupid starling chase hime off my box. Infuriating! I shoild never have put mealworms out. Just attracts starlings. Anyone ever try retrofitting an old bliebird box intoa mealworms feeder? I was thinking of trying that so the starlings can’t get them, but probably needs a transparent top right?

    #7534
    Sassy
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    Hi phillyblues:
    I think I would try changing the direction of the box to a more south/easterly direction. It certainly can’t hurt. I am rooting for you and the blues. Keep us up to date.
    Connie (PA)

    #7535
    phillyblues
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    • Topics started 23
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    Ok I changed them to southeast. We’ll see what happens. My front lawn doesn’t get a lot of early morning sun either way.

    #7536
    Sassy
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    Phillyblues: Here in Western Pa, the storms and wind and rain mainly come from the west, or from the southwest. I find the south east is the most protected from the elements in this neck of the woods. I am hoping moving the direction of the opening has brought you BB success.
    Connie (PA)

    #7704
    phillyblues
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    • Topics started 23
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    Just closing the loop on this. The pair obviously moved on. Last sighting was July 6. I guess I blew my chance somehow. Oh eell. Hopefully next year. Should I try to put mealworms out…is there a chance they’ll come by in the late summer or fall?

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