Thursday, February 28, 2008

Tough Times for Bluebirds

Thursday, February 28, 2008

There have been some very mild late Februaries here in southeastern Ohio. This is not one of them. The bluebirds' normal food sources—fruits, berries, the occasional grub or nearly frozen grasshopper—are covered in snow and ice or simply gone in the case of many of the grapes and pokeweed berries. So they are seeking out alternative food sources. I watched them today doing what Julie described to me a week or so ago—eating sunflower bits from a tube feeder.

Bluebirds are not habitual nut eaters. The sunflower bits have no shell to deal with and are small and fairly soft. The bluebirds were on the feeders every chance they got, until the starling mob descended and took over.

I made sure to keep the suet dough feeder by the kitchen sink window full of food. The bluebirds know to watch for the re-up there and they come in right after the first daring tufted titmouse.

I'll bet the bluebirds are as eager as I am for spring to get here. I caught myself starting to eat a handful of sunflower bits tonight. . . hey—it was cold and my traditional source of food is not available.


On February 27, 2008 at 8:30 PM mon@rch said...

I am more than sure those bluebirds are ready for spring to arrive! Great photos!

On February 28, 2008 at 10:31 AM Bill of the Birds said...

Thanks Tom. More snow here today again. But a little sun peeking through the sucker holes in the clouds.

Had a sapsucker on the peanut feeder, today. Going to try to get his picture.

On February 28, 2008 at 12:13 PM Alan said...

That’s very interesting to see the bluebirds eating seed. Bluebirds at my place a couple winters ago looked as if they were picking thru my seed at the feeders – I’m guessing bits of peanuts and sunflower chips. I told the people over at the local Wild Birds Unlimited store and they told me that my seed must have bugs in it and the bluebirds were picking them out. They quickly changed their tone when I told them that I had recently bought the seed from them! Nice pics!

On March 7, 2008 at 6:47 PM Stacey Huston said...

Great shots. thanks for sharing