November 1, 2021 at 12:55 pm #23818NickNackHummerParticipant
I ordered two wren guards that I will be so happy to use next spring. The wrens were abundant this year and prevented the bluebirds from having a second nesting. I kept removing sticks, but they were relentless.
I was just looking at Steve Gilbertson’s website, and he says that bluebirds appreciate 3″ from the box entrance to where the wren guard starts. I measured my boxes, and one does have 3″, and the other one only has 2 1/2″. I ordered both Gilwood boxes from the same place and thought they were identical except for the roof.
One of them has what they call a double layer roof to provide extra insulation in the heat. That is the box that I wanted the bluebirds to choose and also the one that I can view more easily and more often. Unfortunately it’s the one that only has 2 1/2″ from the box entrance to where the end of the roof where the wren guard will start. I would not be able to extend the roof for the wren guard. The other box will not be in full sun, and I didn’t think it needed the insulated roof.
I have already put the screws in both boxes for the Van Ert traps so I can’t return/exchange the box with the shorter roof. Will 2 1/2″ be enough to allow the bluebirds to enter the box? I do hope so.
East TennesseeNovember 5, 2021 at 10:26 am #23819Carol – Mid-Mo.Participant
Carol, I remember a few years back that the distance recommended was 2 1/2 inches for the wren guard. It was later determined that 3 inches was better because the mama bird can zoom down and into the hole easier. I had this happen to me and was able to put a 1/2″ shim onto the guard, making it the desired 3″. This isn’t too difficult (I have a hubby that helps me) but you may need someone to assist on this. If not, leave it alone and see what happens. I believe it would work with the 2 1/2″ but it is just easier on the mama if she has more room to get in. Good luck.
I am in the midst of feeding my homemade peanut butter suet to my blues, but the numbers of juncos, white crowned sparrows and HOSP far outnumber my blues. You probably do not have your blues overwinter, do you?November 5, 2021 at 12:03 pm #23820NickNackHummerParticipant
Thank you Carol. Maybe I can get a handyman to do this for me. I have someone coming to help me with other things soon, so I will ask him about this, too.
I do have bluebirds overwinter. They’re here year round. I was just watching a pair at my woodpecker cylinder feeder. It has bark butter (suet) and sunflower seeds, and they seem to love it. I have two pair checking out my nest box, too.
We don’t have HOSP until late spring. Last year I saw my first one the day after the bluebirds fledged. The juncos are only here during the winter.
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