Bluebirds Project

blue feather Photos & Movie

blue feather Altricial or precocial

blue feather Feeding

blue feather Song

blue feather Camouflage

blue feather Winter

Activities:

blue feather Charting eggs ele

blue feather All about Birds ele/ms utd 4/14

blue feather Frayer Model Birds - doc. | pdf

blue feather Collecting data ele/ms

blue feather Compare/Contrast

blue feather Food Web

blue feather Nest Box Log ele/ms/hs

blue feather Life Cycles ele/ms

blue feather Mapping Birds ele/ms/hs

blue feather Variables ele/ms/hs

blue feather Feather Facts ms/hs

blue feather Scientific Thinking ele/ms/hs

blue feather Feeder Project doc | pdf

blue feather Systems & Controls ms/hs

blue feather Science Journal Entry ms/hs

blue feather Make Puzzle ele/ms/hs

blue feather Ecology Vocabulary ms/hs

blue feather Classification ms/hs

blue feather Resources

spaceEggs Fact Hunt

spaceBirds Book online

spaceBirds Facts Activity

spaceLearn about Nests

spaceNestWatch

spaceCitizen Science Projects

spaceFields, Meadows EcoStudy Unit

Other Nestbox residents:

spaceTree Swallows

spaceEnglish Sparrow

spaceWren

spaceWren Chicks

spaceNuthatch

spaceMice

spaceChickadee

Male Eastern bluebird photo Bluebirds Project

One of our loveliest North American songbirds is the Eastern Bluebird (Sialia sialis). Bluebird populations declined by an estimated 90% from 1920-1970. Bluebirds were hurt by competition from introduced species (House Sparrows and starlings). Increased pesticide use also hurt many insect eating songbirds, including bluebirds.

Bluebirds have also struggled to survive due to a loss of nesting sites and open space habitat. Bluebirds are cavity nesters. Unlike their cousins the American robin, who will nest in a bush, the bluebird uses abandoned woodpecker holes or natural cavities in dying trees. Bluebirds are secondary cavity nesters . This means they can't excavate their own holes. People often cut down these dead trees. Happily, bluebirds have adapted to using nesting boxes.

Is there a place for bluebirds in your community? Bluebirds need an open, grassy habitat. They need places to perch like trees and bushes or a clothesline. They perch to hunt the ground for grubs, grasshoppers and caterpillars. The campuses of schools, community parks and cemeteries provide just such a habitat. A grassy backyard can be a great place for a bluebird nestbox.

Bluebirds are great Integrated Pest Management allies. They eat lots of harmful insects and their larva. Take care when using pesticides, when you have the blessing of bluebird neighbors. Poisoned insects also poison the birds that eat them.

Bluebirds are not the only native songbirds that will use a nestbox. Chickadees, tree swallows, sparrows, nuthatches, tufted titmice, flycatchers, and house wrens may set up housekeeping in one of the boxes.

Interestingly, cavity nesting birds will gather together in nesting boxes during winter. Scientists believe they do this to share their warmth.

Use the links and activities on the left to explore Eastern Bluebirds.

Attracting and Keeping Bluebirds

Bluebird Reference guide

Wildlife trees

Integrated Pest Management (IPM) in Schools

Bluebird video at NGS

BirdSleuth: Investigating Evidence - free materials from Cornell University

Wetlands Unit / Science Observation Skill Builders / Milkweed and Monarch Butterfly Mania

Water & Watershed Study unit / Energy & Alternative Energies Studies / Best Treat of All / Time Capsule - Study Unit Assessment

Nature / Internet Hunts / Pennsylvania Projects / Puzzles and Projects / Problem based Learning/ Computers / Home

Cindy O'Hora Updated 6/2009, Posted May 2002 Contact: email address

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License.