From New York:
quite different studies of nestbox preferences by bluebirds:
Dave Hofer, of East Concord has compared standard (NABS) and Peterson boxes for
five years. He has kept detailed records and banding data, including 15
recaptures in the last three years. One of those was five years old.
The Peterson boxes proved twice as successful as the NABS box. This past
year, he paired Peterson boxes with five Gilwood boxes and eight PVC boxes.
One of the Gilwood boxes was used twice by bluebirds. Tree swallows did
use all five of the Gilwood boxes and all eight of the PVC boxes.
general our year was definitely two different seasons: April and May were not
good at all; June and July were great. Tree swallows had a terrible year
this season... it wasn't just the bad weather. I think we had far fewer
[tree swallows] in our area this year."
yery condensed below, is from eight pages of detailed records sent to Dave
a note to BBRP, David Hofer noted that there were no PVC boxes in the
area, so "it might take some time for bluebirds to become
comfortable with them". David plans to add more paired PVC boxes
and pairs of Peterson with Gilwood or NABS for further analysis.
|# of boxes
# of NABS boxes
# of Peterson boxes
# of Gilwood boxes
# of PVC boxes
Paired box locations
Total birds fledged
L. Berner,(1) of New York University, Cobleskill, presented some of
his personal research at the recent North American Bluebird Society (NABS) Board
meeting in Minneapolis: In my research through 1999, my most successful boxes to
date had been NABS boxes with oval [Peterson] holes. This summer, I paired
NABS oval-hole boxes with both Gilwood and Troyer boxes.
(2) The NABS
oval boxes paired with Troyer boxes had twice as many bluebird attempts as the
Troyer box. Tree swallows used nearly equal number of each style.
When Gilwood boxes were paired with NABS oval-hole boxes, the Gilwood boxes had
more than six times the bluebird use than the NABS boxes. Swallows used
the NABS boxes at a higher rate than Gilwood, probably because bluebirds
occupied most of the Gilwood boxes.
||No. of boxes
||No. of nesting attempts
Kevin Berner, NABS Research Chairman, will be one of our speakers at our April
(2) Troyer boxes are rectangular with a slot entrance at the top of a downward-slanting
front. The Gilwood box is a sturdv wooden box, with adjustable entrance.
with permission from the February 2001 Bluebird Recovery Program Newsletter