Sunday, June 14, 2009

Baby Eastern Bluebirds

I had an exciting morning with my oldest son and my daughter when we went to band some baby Eastern Bluebirds, Sialia sialis, that had hatched in a Peterson Bluebird house just behind my school. I estimated their age at 8 days which is about as early as we can band them. Until that age their legs are actually too big because of the fat stored along the leg. You can see from the pictures that they still have a little bit of leg fat present.

We found 4 healthy young and got bands on all of them. Mom and dad bluebird didn't raise too much of a ruckus and we were in and out in about 15 minutes. My son got some video of the process that I may try to post later.

If all goes well, it won't be too long before all the birds are out of the nest and hanging out like the birds in the pictures below.

The Eastern Bluebird is truly one of the great success stories of a species recovery due to human assistance.

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