March 5, 2014

 Bluebirds are a group of medium sized thrush birds from the genus Sialia of the thrush family. They are mostly insectivorous or omnivorous, with their favorite foods including crickets, grasshoppers, katydids, and beetles. Other foods include spiders, earthworms, millipedes, sow bugs, centipedes and snails. During the winter, hackberry seeds, dogwood, wild grape and hawthorn are often eaten. They usually perch on posts, low branches and wires scanning for their prospective food and then drop down and then eat the insects or berries that have fallen on the ground.

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Bluebirds have blue or blue and rose-beige plumage, the female bluebirds are less brightly colored than the males and there is no noticeable difference between their sizes. They are very territorial and prefer scattered trees and open grassland. The males are the ones who identify nesting spots and try to attract prospective mates by singing and by flapping their wings and if the female accepts the mating she would build the nest and incubate the eggs.

(Interested in more bluebird articles, see our links below for more great information.)

Mountain Bluebirds

Bluebird China History:

Vintage Bluebird Greetings!

Bluebird Search

Common predators of the bluebirds included domestic cat, raccoons and snakes as well as the non-native American Crow, Common Starling and House Sparrow. Bluebirds of all ages are threatened by rattle snakes and other large predators. They usually suffer heavy losses when a persistent predator finds their nests.

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About 30 years ago, there was a noticeable decline in the bluebirds’ population likely caused by the unsuccessful competition for nesting cavities with starlings and house sparrows. This decline prompted bird lovers and bird feeders to help in the conservation of the species by setting up platforms for feeding and in the creation of nest boxes.

An average bluebird has a life span of 6 to 10 years, the longest recorded lifespan was 10 years and 5 months however young bluebirds could die within the first year of their life due to harsh winter conditions, attacks from predators and starvation.

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 Of all the birds, the bluebirds are a favorite among gardeners. They are the most helpful birds to gardeners as they are voracious insect eaters and can quickly get rid of pests and insects on plants. Gardeners work long and hard to attract bluebirds to stay in the garden for long periods of time. In popular culture the bluebird has been made a symbol of happiness and cheer. They have also inspired patterns on china and several other items.

12.4 Bluebirds

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