Back in late March and early April, our Bluebird monitors started lining up their teams, setting their monitoring schedules for the season and getting ready for nesting! We made our first trips out to the nestbox trails, which are in various places across Loudoun – Claude Moore Park, Temple Hall Farm, Algonkian Park, Rust Nature Sanctuary, and others, as well as private trails maintained by homeowners.
During the first few weekends, we started seeing some early signs, like a pair of Bluebirds courting or sticking their heads in and out of the boxes, and heard the males singing. Then, we started seeing the nesting activity, with beautiful soft grass nests carefully formed for insulation and comfort.
By April 18th, we had nests and eggs along many of the trails. I monitored at both Banshee Reeks and the Dulles Wetlands trails on the 18th and the trails were very active with not only Bluebirds and full clutches of eggs but also Tree Swallows claiming boxes, pairing up and starting their courtship displays.
The Bluebirds will continue to pair up and get their nesting going and then they’ll have as many as three broods over the course of the season. So far, we’re off to a great start!