A quick cellphone pic of five baby bluebirds in the Gilbertson nest box. Look at their little pin feathers popping out! And already they are showing their true blue colors, with a bit of (dinosaur) green.
The bluebird parents take turns bringing bugs to the nestlings all day long. We see them from our kitchen window and back deck. When I was mowing the lawn and got near the nest box the male bluebird dive-bombed me, even touching my head lightly a few times.
Guess these bluebirds aren’t slackers after all. They even laid another egg after I took the photo in early May.
Questions about bluebirds? This site is amazing: Sialis.org
Full of innocent vivacity, warbling its ever pleasing notes, and familiar as any bird can be in its natural freedom, it is one of the most agreeable of our feathered favorites. The pure azure of its mantel, and the glow of its breast, render it conspicuous, as it flits through the orchards and gardens, crosses the fields or meadows, or hops along by the roadside. – John James Audubon
Remember when the bluebirds were courting on snowy Valentines Day?.. Love birds
I spotted the baby bluebirds peeking out of the nest box yesterday evening. Today they are 15 days old. They generally fledge at 17-18 days.
It has been hot for a couple of days, almost 90 degrees and sunny. Maybe they just wanted a breath of cooler evening air!
Here are daily photos on Sialis.org of bluebirds from Eggs to Empty Nest. More info: Development.
Day 14: no unfeathered areas visible. Wings are longer. Capable of weak, short-distance flight. Bird can right itself and make short shuffling movements backwards and forwards.
Day 15: completely feathered. Nestlings huddle together, preen, exercise, stand on edge of nest and look out of nest cavity.
Day 16: able to hop well by day 16. During final days in nest, nestlings flap wings vigorously.
Fledging (leaving the nest): Typically 17-18. May leave as early as 12 (premature) and stay as long as 19-21 days. May be latest for early broods. If the box is empty in this time frame, the nest is flattened, and there is some fecal material (white) on the walls, it usually means fledging was successful. Occasionally a runt will fledge one or even two days later than the others. Insect availability may speed up or delay fledging.