The Eastern Bluebirds have started building a second nest, so more babies will soon be on the way. These parents are a delight to watch as they work together to build the perfect straw nest for their eggs.
As they raised their first brood of five chicks, both parents circled the bird box, keeping a watchful eye for predators. While one kept guard, the other hunted for bugs and worms, both of which are bountiful in my woods.
After 11 days, I checked the box one morning and two babies had already fledged. That afternoon I sat quietly nearby for three hours as the parents circled and called to their young, trying to coax them to take their first flight. Two more did leave the nest that evening. When each one flew out, a parent quickly flew along side and landed with each chick with a morsel of food, as if to say 'good job!'
They tried and tried to convince the last little girl to leave (I don't know for certain that it was a she, but her feathers were not yet as bright as the others, so we'll go with it being a girl.) After they exhausted their persuasive options, each parent visited the next and fed her just as the light vanished. It was precious to see them 'tuck her in'. Then they vanished, again silent, into the trees for the night, surely checking on their four brave chicks.
The next morning, she was still in the box, very likely savoring her last moments of her cozy nest. How lovely it must have been to enjoy an evening not crowded by her siblings :) Eventually, she hopped up to the opening in the box to survey her surroundings. After several minutes, she took off with gusto toward the farthest treeline and the daddy bluebird zoomed alongside her into the leaves.
Be well little one!