Sunday, April 11, 2010

Bring it On

This morning the battle begins anew with the house sparrows.

Bill told me that the bluebirds were back trying to get into their house that they have built their nests in the past two years. I have three bluebird houses in my backyard. The bluebirds prefer the house that is next to my neighbor Tom’s white PVC fence.

The past two years the bluebirds were able to fend off the sparrows but not this year. I tapped off their house after I came back one day last week and found a dead swallow in the bluebird that the sparrow had killed. I knew the sparrow had killed it because after I returned from work and started to pull open the front of the bluebird house, the sparrow darted out. I looked in the bluebird house and there was the dead swallow, the top of its head bare and bloodied. The poor creature had been pecked to death.

The sparrows started to build their nest in another one of the bluebird houses. I am going to let them build their nest to keep them occupied. My hope was that they would forget about the bluebird house that is next to my neighbor’s fence. Again, I underestimated the determination of the sparrow. As soon as I took the tape off of the box this morning the sparrow was over there checking out the accommodation. And not only that, he was chasing the bluebird away from the other bluebird house that the bluebirds were now checking out.

I had no other choice but to tape up the prime bluebird box. I’m taking a chance in letting the bluebirds and the sparrows fight it out for the other box. I won’t be able to monitor their activity today because I’m going to work this afternoon. But I do have tomorrow off. Thus the battle continues between me and the sparrows. One this is certain. There will be no sparrow eggs hatched on my property this year just as there were none hatched last year.

The bluebirds were able to raise two batches of young bluebirds last year just as they had done the previous year. However, I’m not if they will be able to raise any young this year. The sparrows really seem determined. I think part of the problem is my neighbor on the other side of my property took down his purple martin house to keep the sparrows out. I think I’m getting his overflow.

The sparrows are fighting a losing battle with me. I estimated I threw out about 18 sparrow eggs with their nesting last year. This year I’m going to wring some sparrow necks. My message to the sparrows this year…bring it on.

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