[CT Birds] Bluebird Killers?

mcavallero1 at comcast.net mcavallero1 at comcast.net
Thu Aug 11 21:28:45 EDT 2011



I have not seen bluebirds exhibit this type of behavior but, I have personally seen bluejays drag nestlings (of different species) out of nestboxes and kill them by beating them against a bird bath.  It was a startling and gruesome sight....  I've seen grackles decapitate nestlings and young birds.    and I've seen house wrens pierce eggs and throw them and nestlings out of a nest box.    Seems as though many species are capable of this type of nest box aggression. 

Mona Cavallero 

West Hartford, CT 
----- Original Message -----
From: jtriana1 at sbcglobal.net 
To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org 
Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2011 5:48:54 PM 
Subject: [CT Birds]  Bluebird Killers? 

I never say never with nature, but my guess would be House Sparrows.  I have 
seen them do it to chickadees in my own yard.  Last year, we had a brood of 
at least five in a nest box next to the garden.  I hadn't seen a House 
Sparrow in the yard for months or years, but this particular morning I saw a 
male chirping like crazy on top of the box.  I told my girls to go out and 
scare it away, which they did.  I had to leave and so did they with their 
mother.  I returned home 2-3 hours later and saw the male House Sparrow by 
the box again.  I scared it away and then went inside to eat lunch.  From 
the kitchen table I could see an adult chickadee go inside the box with a 
green caterpillar.  It re-emerged with the same caterpillar a few seconds 
later - bad sign.  I went out and opened the box.....empty.  I couldn't 
figure out what happened.  Certainly the chickadee nestlings were too young 
to fledge.  As I turned around to go back inside, I looked down and saw at 
least 4 of the nestlings on the ground, dead, back of their necks snapped. 
No doubt who did it.  Killing for killings sake. That's why when I check 
bluebird boxes and find House Sparrows, I have no problem tossing out eggs 
or nestlings. 

My $0.02. 

John Triana 
Prospect 


-----Original Message----- 
From: ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org 
[mailto:ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org] On Behalf Of Wild Birds 
Unlimited 
Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2011 3:36 PM 
To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org 
Subject: [Bulk] [CT Birds] Bluebird Killers? 

A person told me today that he has a number of bluebird nestboxes on his 
property.  One of the boxes was used by a chickadee.  He said the male 
bluebird decapitated all the newly hatched chickadees.  He claims he saw the 
bluebird going in and out of the box however was not around the day the 
hatchlings were killed.  Has anyone ever heard of this kind of aggression in 
a bluebird? 

Thanks, 
Margaret Robbins 

-- 
Wild Birds Unlimited 
317 Federal Rd. Suite D1 
Brookfield, CT 06804 

Phone - (203)775-4888 
Fax - (203)775-5698 
www.danbury.wbu.com 
----- Original Message -----
From: jtriana1 at sbcglobal.net 
To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org 
Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2011 5:48:54 PM 
Subject: [CT Birds]  Bluebird Killers? 

I never say never with nature, but my guess would be House Sparrows.  I have 
seen them do it to chickadees in my own yard.  Last year, we had a brood of 
at least five in a nest box next to the garden.  I hadn't seen a House 
Sparrow in the yard for months or years, but this particular morning I saw a 
male chirping like crazy on top of the box.  I told my girls to go out and 
scare it away, which they did.  I had to leave and so did they with their 
mother.  I returned home 2-3 hours later and saw the male House Sparrow by 
the box again.  I scared it away and then went inside to eat lunch.  From 
the kitchen table I could see an adult chickadee go inside the box with a 
green caterpillar.  It re-emerged with the same caterpillar a few seconds 
later - bad sign.  I went out and opened the box.....empty.  I couldn't 
figure out what happened.  Certainly the chickadee nestlings were too young 
to fledge.  As I turned around to go back inside, I looked down and saw at 
least 4 of the nestlings on the ground, dead, back of their necks snapped. 
No doubt who did it.  Killing for killings sake. That's why when I check 
bluebird boxes and find House Sparrows, I have no problem tossing out eggs 
or nestlings. 

My $0.02. 

John Triana 
Prospect 


-----Original Message----- 
From: ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org 
[mailto:ctbirds-bounces at lists.ctbirding.org] On Behalf Of Wild Birds 
Unlimited 
Sent: Thursday, August 11, 2011 3:36 PM 
To: ctbirds at lists.ctbirding.org 
Subject: [Bulk] [CT Birds] Bluebird Killers? 

A person told me today that he has a number of bluebird nestboxes on his 
property.  One of the boxes was used by a chickadee.  He said the male 
bluebird decapitated all the newly hatched chickadees.  He claims he saw the 
bluebird going in and out of the box however was not around the day the 
hatchlings were killed.  Has anyone ever heard of this kind of aggression in 
a bluebird? 

Thanks, 
Margaret Robbins 

-- 
Wild Birds Unlimited 
317 Federal Rd. Suite D1 
Brookfield, CT 06804 

Phone - (203)775-4888 
Fax - (203)775-5698 
www.danbury.wbu.com 



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