Let the war begin !!!!

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  • #6104
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
    Participant
    • Topics started 110
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    Like Lisa said, the time is getting close also here in the Midwest. Have had my blues here all winter, but also those miserable HOSP! In the past couple of days I have trapped 3 HOSP, BUT also caught 2 blues! – Wow, that is really scary but I keep close watch and hopefully that experience did not scare the blues away. I have seen them back at their feeder, so hopefully all is well. The HOSP have started nests in 3 of my 4 boxes, so I will really have to be on the lookout. WHY, WHY IN THE WORLD were these birds bring into our country – I know the idea was to help, but it sure backfired!

    #6106
    tamsea
    Moderator
    • Topics started 26
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    • Total Posts 725

    I have caught 3 this week also. They are trying in at least half of my 24 boxes! I lent my trap to my friend who caught 3 in one day.

    Tammy

    #6117
    Lisa
    Participant
    • Topics started 21
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    I am so sorry guys…I have no idea why I don’t have HOSP because the Target parking lot a mile away is full of them.I am really enjoying the goldfinches right now while waiting for that first blue egg!

    #6118
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
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    • Topics started 110
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    Lisa, sounds like all the HOSP are at Target – I have a WalMart and other “HOSP loving” stores but they are about 2 1/2 miles away, as we live in a rural subdivision. Just be glad those are not coming to your home!!

    #6226
    verachuckdave
    Participant
    • Topics started 23
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    • Total Posts 207

    I fed dry meal worms to my blues all winter, and they stuck around. Now, right when it is time to nest, they have been driven off by HOSP. Last year, I had paired boxes on one pole. I had tree swallows in one house and bluebirds in the other house. The tree swallows returned, but every time they try to inhabit their house, the HOSP show up and chase them off. I just keep removing the HOSP nests 2-3 times a day. They are relentless.

    Susan
    Pennsylvania

    #6229
    Dana
    Participant
    • Topics started 39
    • Replies 155
    • Total Posts 194

    Hi Carol and everyone:
    I have read that the Gilbertson PVC nestbox and the Slot Nestbox are pretty good at deterring house sparrows. I have a Slot nestbox and have not had any problems with HOSP since I put it up. There’s also the Skylight box shown here: http://www.bluebirdconservation.com/product/sparrow-resistant-bluebird-skylight-box/ Of course there is always exceptions to these when it comes to the pesky HOSP. But these nestboxes may be worth a try. I’m just so sorry to hear about your troubles with the sparrows. Not to mention this Spring has been unusually cold.

    #6236
    dogsandbirds
    Moderator
    • Topics started 5
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    I know I haven’t been around a whole lot lately, but please listen to me on this.

    Cavity birds raise their young in the dark for a reason. The skylight boxes are not a good thing for developing eyes. A box with a hole in the roof would be the absolute last resort.

    Gin
    Atlanta, GA

    #6237
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
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    • Topics started 110
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    Thanks, Dana – yes it has been a tough start this season. I have 2 different types of boxes, one is the regular round hole opening with a top that opens. This is my oldest style and one that draws the most blues. However, the HOSP like it also. Then I have the Gilwood style which is sort of a slot opening, but not true slot, with front door opening. I like the convenience of the Gilwood due to the fact I am barely 5′ tall and can see it in well. The blues do use it, also, but seems like not as much. So, the HOSP really don’t care I think – I’ve had to fight ( with VanErt trap) those things all 11 seasons now, but I usually draw at least 2 and lots of time 3 BB nests/eggs. Nothing yet this year, although my pair are definitely around, coming for mealworms 2x a day. Hoping for the best. P.S. I believe the PVC box would be too hot for our weather, as my boxes are out in full sun and I use a heat shield even on it on the 2 & 3rd nestings.

    #6243
    dlibby
    Participant
    • Topics started 12
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    • Total Posts 40

    Hi Carol, I had read a different post you had asking if blues have ever nested in a martin house and the answer is yes. I never heard of or seen bluebirds till the first year they came and had babies in our martin house. That’s when I looked them up online and got into this. I built my own bluebird houses and set up a meal worm station and the rest is history. They have never gone back to the martin house now they have one built just for them. The martin house is only 20 ft from their house but they have no interest. I would be very surprised if they chose a martin house over your bluebird house. They are probably just taking their time to move in.

    #6244
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
    Participant
    • Topics started 110
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    Hi, Gin – we miss you. And I absolutely agree with the skylight box thing – not a good thing.

    Dibby, wow, that is some news about blues nesting in martin houses. This neighbor who has the martin house also has pine trees which I know my blues like and probably where they roost at night. They do not have any BB boxes, but it is very possible my blues have a nest in one of their apartments there. This would NOT be a good thing, as they have 2 cats which are outdoors a lot. I cannot control anything here and do nothing but hope & pray they come back home! I have 4 boxes for them to choose from and just captured another male HOSP out of the one box they have been at. I’ll know more later if they start bringing their worms over there. Thanks.

    #6251
    Dana
    Participant
    • Topics started 39
    • Replies 155
    • Total Posts 194

    Hi Gin and Carol,
    I stand corrected. Very sorry for posting the Skylight Birdhouse link. I know little about it and I never even thought about the fact it’s not good for the baby bird’s eyes. Again my apologies.

    #6256
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
    Participant
    • Topics started 110
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    Dana, this is how we learn & improve – listen to others and learn from our own mistakes.

    #6259
    dogsandbirds
    Moderator
    • Topics started 5
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    Dana, no worries. As you will find out, I have tons of trivia stored in my brain. Most is useless!

    Gin
    Atlanta, GA

    #6287
    tamsea
    Moderator
    • Topics started 26
    • Replies 699
    • Total Posts 725

    And I have no trivia stored in my brain. I count on Gin for all of that. LOL Funny but kind of true.
    Carol. Does your friend monitor her martin house? Do they have martins? They probably won’t get martins if they let their bluebirds nest in that house. They have co-existed before but it isn’t the norm.

    Tammy

    #6291
    Carol – Mid-Mo.
    Participant
    • Topics started 110
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    Tammy, the neighbors where I believe my blues are nesting don’t have bluebird houses, only the martin complex. But we suspect that my blues are nesting in a large tree over three which has a hole in it – believe owner had cut it partially down and looks like it might have a cavity in it. I am going to try to contact them this week – they both work and I will have to wait until they are home. I am really fearful for my pair because of their cats and with no monitoring HOSP are also a definite problem. I have to just have faith and know there is really nothing I can do at this point,especially if there are eggs. I don’t believe there are any babies yet, as they are not bring the worms over there. I really feel hurt and abandoned for this pair to do this, as they have been with in for several years,including all winter. At first I was mad and thought “I will just quit feeding them”, but they realized this was not what they need and that this was childish behavior! Just have to wait and see.

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