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Click to go to Audubon Society of Omaha Home Page Audubon Society of OmahaEastern Bluebird

Welcome to The Bluebird Box since 1995
Best of Bluebird Mailing Lists Classified

Bluebird feeding - seeds? (Part 1)

In addition to Messages that have appeared in the Bluebird Mailing Lists on this topic, the following are on the Audubon Society of Omaha website: 


Subj: Re:Bluebirds eating whole sunflower seeds
Date: 11/19/99 4:56:23 PM Central Standard Time
From: bluebird"at"waveone.net (Jim Auer)
Sender: owner-BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Reply-to: bluebird"at"waveone.net
To: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu

Hello Everyone,

My name is Ann Auer and I am Secretary/Treasurer of the Indiana Bluebird Society........we have been reading all the posts for quite some time now.....my husband has posted once or twice, but I have had fun just reading.

I had an experience last Monday that I have not witnessed in the past and wonder if anyone else has. First, I will back up a little.....For the last two years we have had bluebirds spending the winter with us and roosting in a box in our backyard. Last year there were 6. About December of last year they started begging for mealworms so I began feeding them....it wasn't too long and I noticed that a robin and a pesky blue jay were chasing them from the mealworms. I also noticed about the same time that the bluebirds were coming to my window feeder and eating peanut pieces and sunflower chips. I promptly put up another window feeder which I only filled with mealworms. I don't think they even hesitated before coming to that feeder. It worked out very well!!!

We have not had bluebirds coming for mealworms since July....then a couple of weeks ago they started hanging around so I put a few mealworms out at a time. Last Monday I was working on the computer(which is about 18 inches from the window feeders) and 2 bluebirds came.......one to eat mealworms.....but another male perched on the other window feeder and promptly started eating whole black oil sunflower seeds. He would act like he was trying to crack them open and then "gulp" just gobbled them up. My question is: Can a bluebird digest a whole sunflower seed??? Has anyone else witnessed this kind of activity??

Also, to Haleya: Did you figure out what kind of bugs you received??? Were they Larder Beatle larvae??? I found about 50 of those in one of my mealworm colonies once and they are very ugly....but the mealworms thrived in that container. Good luck!!!

Ann Auer
Leesburg IN......Northern part of the state

 


Subj: Re:Bluebirds eating whole sunflower seeds
Date: 11/19/99 9:12:59 PM Central Standard Time
From: hubertrap"at"webtv.net (Joe Huber)
Sender: owner-BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Reply-to: hubertrap"at"webtv.net
To: bluebird"at"waveone.net, BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu

Hello Ann, Your question was can Bluebirds digest whole sunflower seeds.  Don't think they can as all other seeds pass through them unchanged.  Many birds eat things that are of no nutritional value. Maybe they are watching other birds eat them and try them. In a sample of their droppings in a winter roost box there were some proso millet seeds. They looked just like the ones at my feeders. You could plant them and expect them to grow. Joe Huber Venice Fl.

 


Subj: Re:Whole sunflower seeds and roosting
Date: 11/20/99 7:50:58 AM Central Standard Time
From: bluebird"at"waveone.net (Jim Auer)
Sender: owner-BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Reply-to: bluebird"at"waveone.net
To: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu

Gary,

Thanks to everyone who has responded about the whole sunflower seeds....I guess my main concern was that it might be harmful to them to just swallow them whole......but if they just pass through then we're probably safe........maybe they just eat anything that looks good...I was just surprised when there were mealworms 6 inches away!

The boxes that I have had bluebirds roost in are just regular peterson houses.........we put out a roosting box one year and nothing used it......I always go out the end of November or the first of December and plug the vent hole in all my boxes so that they will be warmer......that's about all I do......I have them roost in several. I've never had them roost(at least as far as I can tell) in a slot box or NABS box. I always take down my PVC boxes because we have quite a bit of vandalism here.

Ann Auer
Leesburg, IN-----Northern part of the State

 


Subj: Swallowing whole/spirits
Date: 11/20/99 12:10:51 PM Central Standard Time
From: springer"at"alltel.net (Gary Springer)
Sender: owner-BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Reply-to: springer"at"alltel.net
To: bluebird"at"waveone.net
CC: springer"at"alltel.net (Gary Springer), BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu (BLUEBIRD-L)

Dear Ann,

Regarding concern for possible harm to the Bluebird you observed swallowing whole sunflower seeds, hull and all, I'm quite sure they'll be all right.

Last summer I observed adult Bluebirds feeding whole black cherries to 12 day old nestlings in a nest box.

I had adopted a 5 day chick after 3 of its siblings had starved to death and its parents had abandoned the nest. When this chick was about 21 days old I started feeding it Black Cherries because it was a plentiful wild food source it would have available when I turned it loose.

The interesting thing is that the pits from these cherries were regurgitated, not passed through as excrement.

I found very clean pits sitting on the window sill and other strange places inside my house. I couldn't figure it out until I cleaned out the nest box which I had observed adult birds feeding nestlings the Black Cherries. There were about 35 of the same very clean cherry pits inside. It was apparent they were regurgitated. I believe these pits are a bit bigger than black oil sunflower seeds.

Also, coincidentally, just this morning I had the wonderful fortune to observe within 20 feet a flock of about 25 Cedar Waxwings for over half an hour as they ate Persimmons and Dogwood berries. I think the attraction was the Persimmons. They apparently made up their minds they weren't going to let me keep them from a great meal.

The birds just pecked at the Persimmons, knocking many from the tree and onto the forest floor.

When I saw the first Waxwing pick a Dogwood berry and hold it in its bill, hesitating momentarily, I wondered if it would swallow it whole as I had observed Robins do so many times. This bird is even smaller than a Bluebird. That bright red berry looked huge sitting on the end of its bill. I think the bird was intimidated too. But, sure enough, it cocked its head back, gulped forcefully several times, finally forcing the berry down its throat, and without hesitating, plucked another berry off the tree and gulped it down too.

Oh yeh, while making my observations this morning I heard Eastern Bluebirds all around me in the forest for about an hour. Sometimes it sounded as though there were several and very near by. Sometimes it sounded as though they were flying by high in the sky. Sometimes for several minutes it sounded like a single bird delivering its sweet churwee call from a perch within a hundred feet or so.

I know this sounds like I need help. But I never saw a single Bluebird. Maybe they have another option in their repertoire other than migrating or wintering over. Maybe they shed their material bodies and become singing spirits. It sure seemed that way this morning.

Gary Springer
NE Georgia

PS Thank you for sharing the details of your Bluebird roosting experiences in the Peterson nest boxes with the ventilation holes sealed off. I presume these nest boxes are mounted about 6 feet high. Do they roost in them frequently or most often only in severe weather?

- Original Message -----
From: Jim Auer
To:
Sent: Saturday, November 20, 1999 8:56 AM
Subject: Re:Whole sunflower seeds and roosting
...
 


Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000 09:36:39 -0600
From: "Wright, Merlin C." mcwrigh"at"nppd.com
To: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: seeds and gizzards

When I read of seeds passing through a bird I wonder why their gizzard doesn/t grind the seed. Does any one know the reason? All birds have gizzards don't they? I remember that chicken gizzards contain gravel and I often see birds 'eating' stuff off the ground where there doesn't appear to be any food. Do the birds that eat mostly insects NOT eat sand and gravel?

Merlin Wright at Brownville Nebraska

 


Date: Tue, 07 Mar 2000 13:22:13 -0400
From: Haleya Priest/Thom Levy hpandtl"at"crocker.com
To: mcwrigh"at"nppd.com, BLUEBIRD BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: seeds and gizzards

Haleya Priest Amherst, MA

Here's my guess. Perhaps if gizzards dissolved berry seeds, we'd have a problem with regermination since I imagine a lot of seeds germinate from fecal matter left behind - not just birds but other animals as well. Perhaps the first line of defense by Ma Nature was to make sure the skin of the seed was very thick and smooth so they couldn't be chewed easily.   And then in some cases She took it a step farther and made the seed poisonous. For example, the juice of a poke berries is an excellent reliever of arthritis pain. But one must swallow the berries whole since the seeds are terribly poisonous. Perhaps animals know this too, and if they forget, their gizzards won't.  Same is true for at least some early spring growth of plants. Comfrey leaves up to 3 or 4" tall contain a toxin that animals find offensive. So they leave it alone. Thus they keep right on growing. Mother nature is a smart one, isn't she.

Wright, Merlin C. wrote:


When I read of seeds passing through a bird I wonder why their gizzard

...


Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000 12:29:49 -0600
From: "Fread Loane" firefrost2"at"earthlink.net
To: "BLUEBIRD-L" BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Gizzards & Gravel

An attempt to answer Merlin Wright's question:

Birds have a two part stomach. A glandular portion (the proventriculus) and a muscular portion (the ventriculus) or the "gizzard". Hydrochloric acid, mucous, and an enzyme, PEPSIN, are secreted by specialized cells in the proventriculus, where chemical digestion begins. The gizzard has a thick muscular wall and plays an important part in the mechanical digestion by both crushing and grinding food. To aid in the mechanical digestion process, birds will often take in small gravel or grit.

It is utterly amazing that some seeds possess such a hard coat that they can pass through the digestive tract without being destroyed. Even more amazing, many plants produce seed which must go through this "scarification" (or grinding away of the seed coat) process to germinate properly.

To my knowledge, all birds do have gizzards, however, some, like fish-eating birds, do not require their food to be so completely ground and pulverized for digestion and, hence, have smaller gizzards.

Fread J. Loane
Tulsa, Oklahoma

 


Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000 13:31:19 -0800
From: Maynard R Sumner m-r-sumner"at"juno.com
To: Bluebird-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: seeds and gizzards

Merlin,

Birds who seeds do have a gizzard, but birds who eat bugs do have a gizzard. So the seeds pass right through them.

Maynard R Sumner

Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. Galatians 6:7

On Tue, 7 Mar 2000 09:36:39 -0600 "Wright, Merlin C." mcwrigh"at"nppd.com
writes:

When I read of seeds passing through a bird I wonder why their

...


Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000 13:59:17 -0800
From: Maynard R Sumner m-r-sumner"at"juno.com
To: Bluebird-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: seeds and gizzards

I was wrong. All birds do have gizzards, but the ones who eat bugs do not grind seeds as good as the seed eater do.

Maynard R Sumner Flint, Michigan

Whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. Galatian 6:7

 


Date: Tue, 7 Mar 2000 14:23:46 EST
From: Tsapling"at"aol.com
To: Bluebird-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Gizzards and Gravel

Further to what Firefrost said, after the Do-do bird species disappeared, it took a while to figure out that the forests were not rejuventaing themeselves and it turned out that the seed had to pass thru the system of a bird the size of the Do-do in order to have new growth and the human species would have to do mechanically what the Do-do was doing naturally if they wanted new trees. Sorry I don't have the specific name of the specific tree.

Tina
No Calif

 


Date: Tue, 07 Mar 2000 21:17:21 -0800
From: Hatch Graham birdsfly"at"innercite.com
To: Fread Loane firefrost2"at"earthlink.net
Cc: BLUEBIRD-L BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: Gizzards & Gravel

Hi All: Hatch Graham in California.

Part of my Senior Problem in Forest Ecology involved a little more than trying to grow seeds ingested by birds. I had to research more. What Fread refers to is correct.   I recall (but can't give you the correct reference after 50 years) there was a Woody Plant Seed Manual produced by the USDA-Forest Service. Many seeds are germinated best by an acid bath or by mechanical thinning of the seed coat. On the desert, certain seeds remain in the soil for years until a flash flood grinds them through the sandy flood to make them ready to germinate when, coincidentally (?), there is plenty of moisture for them to get a good start.   I have prepared seeds for planting by pulping the fruit off, giving them a quick bath in boiling water and soaking them in vinegar. It works. The birds' way is the natural way.

Hatch Graham
Forester & Wildlife Biologist
Somerset, California.
still raining after a month---

Fread Loane wrote:

An attempt to answer Merlin Wright's question:Birds have a two part

...


Date: Wed, 8 Mar 2000 16:26:16 -0500
From: "Bruce Burdett" blueburd"at"srnet.com
To: nzbiciak"at"gfn.org
Cc: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Oilers.

From: Bruce Burdett, NH Bluebird Conspiracy, Sunapee NH
blueburd"at"srnet.com

I've become very hesitant to make flat statements on this List because someone always seems to come up with the exceptional case. I don't BELIEVE, however, that Bluebirds eat black oil sunflower seeds, or any hard-shelled seeds. Their normal summer diet is mostly grasshoppers, crickets, caterpillars, etc. In the colder seasons they turn to a wide variety of wild berries, and they always love live mealworms, which one must either buy or raise, - or both. Some people make (or buy) various suet-based concoctions, but I have never used them. The only Bluebird Treat (pelletized) I ever bought they would not touch.

Awhile back I said that honey-bees never nest in bird-houses. Apparently they do, though I've never seen it happen, and I'm a bee- keeper who has seen honey-bees do a lot of weird stuff.


Date: Thu, 16 Mar 2000 00:14:08 EST
From: Sunnyranchusa"at"aol.com
To: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: seed eating??

We all hear how our BB friends are insect eaters, well last year one of my 57 boxes that is less than 50 yds from the guest house on our property was frequented several times a day by a BB that would eat from a feeder that was suction cupped to the window. At one time or another their would be both male and female BB eating seeds at the same time????? Go figure, there was not a shortage of insects in our area. The feeder was filled with "fancy wild bird mix" for my other feathered friends

F.Y.I
SEAN HANNAGAN 45 minutes west of saint louis, mo
SUNNY RANCH


Date: Thu, 16 Mar 2000 13:56:37 -0500
From: Elaine Rigby erigby"at"home.com
Cc: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: seed eating??

Hi : )

I've had BlueBirds eating out of my feeder all winter and they are still eating out of it on 80 degree days here in Virginia. Personally, I think they got desperate when we had that unusual snowfall (16+ inches is unusual for one snow fall in south central VA) They discovered that A) They Liked it, and B) It was there all the time.

What we have is a "chickadee mix" put together by our local "Southern States" which is a combo Feed (horse, dog, bird etc), saddle shop, and yuppie garden store. The mix is Black Oil Sunflower seeds, a few seeds I don't know (no millet etc.) and Peanut Hearts. To that we add Safflower Hearts (hoping our Cardinals will come back this year).  They seem to like this. We also have a lot of adults around this year due to a good season last year....and they have been hanging around with the finches, who lead them to our feeder.

So, even though it's not supposed to happen, blue birds do eat from seed feeders under the right conditions.

Laney
Richmond VA Area.

Sunnyranchusa"at"aol.com wrote:

We all hear how our BB friends are insect eaters, well last year one of my 57
boxes that is less than 50 yds from the guest house on our property was
frequented several times a day by a BB that would eat from a feeder that was
suction cupped to the window. At one time or another their would be both
male and female BB eating seeds at the same time????? Go figure, there
was not a shortage of insects in our area. The feeder was filled with "fancy
wild bird mix" for my other feathered friends

F.Y.I
SEAN HANNAGAN 45 minutes west of saint louis, mo
SUNNY RANCH

 


Date: Tue, 21 Mar 2000 23:01:45 -0500
From: Elaine Rigby erigby"at"home.com
To: BLUEBIRD BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Seed Eating Blue Bird

Hi : )

For the folks who are interested in actually seeing a seed eating BlueBird.....I have video of my mail bluebird eating off the seed feeder on my deck.

It's a fairly large file.... but if you have the bandwith, or the time, let me know, and I'll email you the file.

The file is 1.8mb and its about 8 or 9 seconds long.

Laney
Richmond VA

 


Date: Tue, 21 Mar 2000 22:05:46 EST
From: Sss2gemini"at"aol.com
To: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Feeding Behavior

Sherry Hunter
Byron Center, MI (lat: 42.79 N Long: -85.72 W )

This morning as I was watching my bluebird pair sitting on their bluebird house, flying from tree to tree, flying over the field, going in the house together and shooing away a starling that got too close to their box, I was surpised to see Mr. Bluebird fly onto the perch of my thistle feeder, lean over and begin to eat some of the seed on the bottom rim of the feeder. My thistle feeders are hanging in one of my Maple trees that is located about 30 feet in front of the bluebird house, which is the tree they use sometimes to sit in to observe their territory. I was very surpised to see a bluebird on a thistle feeder.

 


Date: Wed, 22 Mar 2000 09:07:20 -0500
From: "Patricia Haught" phaught"at"dellnet.com
To: Sss2gemini"at"aol.com, Bluebird-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: Feeding Behavior

Hi Sherry, Could he have been using one of the perches on the thistle feeder to search for food? We've had bluebirds at our suet cakes and they will go into the bluebird feeder and eat bluebird treat. They eat mealworms, of course. That's interesting. We have a couple "odd" feeding behaviors too. I've seen a Carolina chickadee take a sip from the oriole feeder on two occasions. We've had two Robins who are spending their days under our feeders. Actually, only one of them sits under the thistle feeder for almost the entire daylight hours. S/he has eaten crumbs from a suet cake. I've watched him/her do that many times. Most of the time, s/he uses its beak to dig around under the feeders and eats nonstop. I don't have a clue what it is finding to eat but it sure looks plump! I hope that someone will have some suggestions about the bluebird on the thistle feeder or either of our strange feeding behaviors. Patty in WV


Sherry Hunter
Byron Center, MI (lat: 42.79 N Long: -85.72 W )

I was
surpised to see Mr. Bluebird fly onto the perch of my thistle feeder, lean
over and begin to eat some of the seed on the bottom rim of the feeder.

 


Date: Wed, 22 Mar 2000 12:12:10 -0500
From: "Elizabeth Nichols" birdlady"at"netstorm.net
To: Bluebird-L"at"Cornell.edu
Cc: phaught"at"dellnet.com
Subject: Feeding Behavior

Hi Patricia and all:

In response to your question relating to robins ground feeding under your seed feeders:

The ground has been softened by seeds falling and the soil is loose allowing the robins to scratch around finding grubs & earthworms. During the cold weather bluebirds have been known to "follow the robins" in their groundbreaking activities in order to benefit from what their stronger cousins uncover. Robins are good scratchers as their legs are much stronger.

Hope this answers your question.

Betty Nichols, Middletown, MD partly sunny, 50* rain gone.

 


Date: Sat, 13 May 2000 18:56:13 -0400
From: Elaine Rigby erigby"at"home.com
To: BLUEBIRD BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Feeding the Fledgelings Seed?

Hi Folks,

Has anyone ever seen a Mother and/or father bluebird feed the fledgelings seed?

This winter our bluebirds learned to like the seed we had in a specialized mix. It has peanut hearts, sunflower hearts and safflower hearts, and a few unidentified seeds. The key being that pretty much all of the seeds are hulled.

Now, Mom and Dad are feeding the babies seed right on the seed feeder on my back porch.

I will try to get a picture of this as it is the most amazing site..... I do also feed mealworms, but I only put them out late in the day, once. I really find it odd that they are eating the seed and feeding it to the fledgelings.

Any comments??????

Laney
Richmond VA area.

 


Date: Sat, 13 May 2000 19:38:28 -0400
From: "birdlady" birdlady"at"netstorm.net
To: erigby"at"home.com
Cc: Bluebird-L"at"Cornell.edu
Subject: Re: Feeding the Fledgelings Seed?
 

-----Original Message-----
From: Elaine Rigby erigby"at"home.com
To: BLUEBIRD BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Date: Samstag, 13. Mai 2000 18:54
Subject: Feeding the Fledgelings Seed?
 

Betty Nichols, Middletown, MD

Hi Laney:

Now that is a luxury to only those who have Eastern Bluebirds nesting in their yard!

No, I have never seen that but it is a good mixture of food - the peanut hearts are probably the first to go! It appears your pair wintered over - the fledgelings just might do that ,too! I hope you can get a picture of the little rascals. Thanks for the good news!

Betty Nichols

Hi Folks,

Has anyone ever seen a Mother and/or father bluebird feed the

...


Date: Sat, 13 May 2000 23:39:14 EDT
From: "Yvonne L. L. Bordelon" ylbordelon"at"juno.com
To: BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: Feeding the Fledgelings Seed?

Once, I bought a specialized "cardinal" mix that had dried cherries in it. Perhaps your mix has some dried fruit.
Yvonne Bordelon
Covington, LA on the N. Shore of Lake Ponchatrain

On Sat, 13 May 2000 18:56:13 -0400 Elaine Rigby erigby"at"home.com writes:
Hi Folks,

Has anyone ever seen a Mother and/or father bluebird feed the

...


Date: Sun, 14 May 2000 07:56:57 -0400
From: "Fawzi P. Emad"
To: "bluebird-l"
Subject: Re: Feeding the Fledgelings Seed?

Hello Elaine and all. Both male and female eastern bluebirds (EABL) eat regularly at the seed feeder in my backyard (peanut hearts and hulled sunflower). They seem to like it... the babies are due to fledge in a week, but I am going to remove the feeder due to the presence of larger birds (jays, grackles and cardinals) thus I will not be able to see the parents feed seeds by the babies . I was so surprised that EABL would eat seeds on
a regular basis...

Fawzi Emad, Laytonsville, MD

----- Original Message -----
From: Elaine Rigby
To: BLUEBIRD
Sent: Saturday, May 13, 2000 6:56 PM
Subject: Feeding the Fledgelings Seed?

...


Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2001 10:29:10 EST
From: Jennabirds"at"aol.com
To: birdlady"at"netstorm.net, hjsher1"at"yahoo.com
Cc: Bluebird-l"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Mealworms-Raisins

Betty,
Not so fast at accusing MD bluebirds of being picky :). Our backyard in North/Eastern, MD has bluebirds coming to a seed feeder for sunflower chips when the mealworm feeder is empty. My daughter, Jenna (7 yrs.old) told me of bluebirds eating out of her window feeder in December, 2000 and then my wife Sandy brought it to my attention shortly after, about bluebirds eating from our platform feeder. I had just switched over to a homemade birdseed mix of 50% black oiled sunflower seed, 25% sunflower kernels and 25% sunflower chips and thought they both were mistaken. I was wrong! Don't tell my wife I admitted to being wrong, but we went with 100% of each sunflower food in individual feeders and found it to be sunflower chips that the bluebirds were eating.

Don't get me wrong, the food of choice in the winter from humans is mealworms, but sunflower chips is an alternate choice that will help them make it through the winter during hard times.

Please let me know if anybody else has had any success with sunflower chips. It will be interesting to see if they continue to eat these chips in the spring and summer. A beautiful male was eating some this morning.

I mentioned it this past weekend at the BSP bluebird conference, and the people kind of looked at me like I had three heads.

David A. Magness
Whiteford MD


Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2001 08:00:16 -0800 (PST)
From: Horace Sher hjsher1"at"yahoo.com
To: Bluebird-l"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: Mealworms-Raisins--Sunflower chips

Hi David & all...Now that you mentoned it, you have jogged my memory..I knew there was something that I had left out of my list of foods that I posted yesterday...& sunflower chips is it. Yes, I've put them into the Bluebird feeder a couple of times & did notice my EABL eating some when the Dogwood berries & raisins were all gone. Also, I recall that on a couple of occasions within the last 2 years, the EABL have gone to the main sunflower hopper feeder to eat something. The only thing that was in the feeder were sunflower seeds..a little of which would be some partially opened sunflower seeds which I thing the EABL nibbled on. The Carolina Wren also was after those partially opened seeds....Horace in NC.
 

************************************************
--- Jennabirds"at"aol.com wrote:
Betty,
Not so fast at accusing MD bluebirds of being

...
 

=====


Date: Thu, 29 Mar 2001 21:50:38 -0800 (PST)
From: Daniel Sparks dansparks_47448"at"yahoo.com
To: Jennabirds"at"aol.com, birdlady"at"netstorm.net, hjsher1"at"yahoo.com
Cc: Bluebird-l"at"cornell.edu
Subject: Re: Mealworms-Raisins

--- Jennabirds"at"aol.com wrote:

Betty,
Not so fast at accusing MD bluebirds of being

...

David,

Bluebirds like sunflower chips in Indiana too. Do you feed bluebirds all year?

=====
Dan Sparks
P.O. Box 660
Brown County Bluebird Society
Nashville, IN 47448
dansparks_47448"at"yahoo.com


Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2001 13:55:48 -0400
To: BLUEBIRD-L BLUEBIRD-L"at"cornell.edu
From: Barb DeLong delong24"at"msu.edu
Subject: Blues

I have a question that's probably been answered before, but yesterday my husband and I noticed a couple of bluebirds on our back deck - checking our our bird feeders - we only have out safflower seeds and thistle. Although I put the last small bit of wild bird seed out  when I was cleaning out one of the feeders.

Do Blues eat any kind of this seed? My husband made a comment that maybe the Blues knew something we didn't - like it was going to be a harder winter this year and they were looking for other kinds of foods besides the berries, mealies, etc.

We are thinking about "winterizing" our boxes so the blues may have somewhere to roost. What is the best method - especially keep the HOSP out? Yesterday the Blues we saw where checking out one of the boxes and I went out and opened the door and a HOSP flew out and scared me to death!

Guess they didn't want the HOSP in there.

So I've checked out the previous emails that the list has sent regarding

Bluebird Suet - will they normally eat this during the winter and is this something that will keep the "unwanted" birds around for the winter?

I would love to see my blues all winter, but don't want to encourage others to help the Blues eat it.

Thanks!
Barb DeLong
Eaton Rapids, MI


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