We know what you’re thinking. This is going to be some shameless plug about Valentine’s Day (it’s Thursday, 2/14) and what great gifts we have for the bird lover in your life (we do – lots of them), but this is more about getting ready for spring and therefore mating season for Carolina songbirds.
While it may not feel like it right now, spring is not far away. The birds know it, and many are starting to prepare for it, and so should you.
If you didn’t do it back in the fall, now is the time to clean out your bird houses, making sure they are in good repair and mounted on sturdy poles. A lot of customers are reporting bluebird activity at their feeders and their nesting boxes. Although it’s still a bit early for them to actually start nesting, they are shopping around and making notes on the most desirable locations in the area.
How can you get on the list of “desirable locations”? First, clean and sturdy, as discussed above. Secondly, ensure that the entrance hole is facing south or east (or southeast). For bluebirds, the nesting box needs to be mounted on a pole (not hanging!) in an open area, facing a wide expanse of openness. He likes to sit on top of the house, with a nice 360-degree view of his territory, and she wants to sit in the box, with a view to the south with no trees or large shrubs.
These are the best guidelines for attracting bluebirds. We know that for every rule, there will be someone who says, “My bluebirds love my hanging house” or “My bluebird house is on a tree and has bluebirds every year,” but if you want to give yourself the best chance of a breeding pair of these gorgeous birds, these guidelines will give you the best chance for success!
About the author: Bird House on the Greenway on Rea Road and Wildology at Waverly are owned and operated by Carol Buie-Jackson and Jay Jackson. Both have been avid birders and wildlife enthusiasts for more than 30 years and are more than willing to share what they know about the local birding community. You can contact Carol at firstname.lastname@example.org.