Eastern Bluebirds

by Ed Gill

For several weeks now we have been seeing bluebirds back in our yard. They are always a welcome sight and a harbinger of spring. A new and interesting sight this year was the bluebird seemingly attacking our car side view mirrors. Fluttering around in front of the mirror, then landing on the mirror and the cycle would continue. And lots of poop on the car door!

It turns out that the male was defending his territory from what he thought was another intruder male. I actually had to cover the mirrors while the car was parked in the driveway to discourage the behavior. To his detriment, the male will spend all day defending rather than feeding or nesting. This territorial defense is not unique to bluebirds as many species display this behavior.

While the female sits on the eggs, the male is charged with finding food. Bluebirds will nest from March through early summer with 1-3 broods possible per year. Clutch size is 2-7 eggs. These are beautiful birds that you can encourage to nest in your yard by providing nest boxes. Plans are available from the Cornell site linked below.