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Bluebird Predator Control

House cats and raccoons are among the most serious bluebird predators.  Baffles or a greased pole are advised for use in areas where cats and raccoons are likely.  A 5-inch roof overhang above the entrance hole reduces the possibility of raccoon or cat predation from above.

Avoid mounting your box on a tree or fence post If raccoons or other predators are present.  Raccoons will naturally patrol fence lines and are likely to locate the nest box.

This PVC box, while not fancy, is effective.  It has an overhang on the front to prevent predators from reaching into the box from above and an extended shade guard to provide protection from the hot afternoon sun.

pvc bluebird box

pvc bluebird box

It is often a good idea to place a guard under the box to prevent snakes and other animals from entering the nest box.  Commercial guards of several types are available or you may construct your own. Coat metal poles with grease to make it more difficult for snakes to climb.

Birding Quick Hits

Blue Jays do Johnny Appleseed one better.  After the retreat of the last ice age, oak trees spread back north faster than might have been expected.  There is speculation that Blue Jays helped the process by caching acorns underground, some of which grew into new trees.