We have an egg!

IMG_2358 ldIt didn’t take Mama II long to give us a pretty powder blue egg.  Even though the north wind is blowing and it’s cool, she produced the first egg of her first clutch just three days after completing her nest.  Bluebirds can lay an egg every day if the weather is good and the stars are aligned, but it’s not unusual for them to skip a day or two if the weather is cool.

Click photo to enlarge.

Bluebird eggs are about the size of a nickel.  A clutch consists of 4-7 eggs, though I’ve never had more than five in my nest box.  Once the female’s clutch is complete she will begin incubation.  This allows the eggs to hatch at eggscircle3roughly the same time.  Bluebirds tend to lay larger clutches earlier in the season and northern bluebirds lay larger clutches

Egg circle from sialis.org, the most comprehensive bluebird site on the web.

than southern birds.  But the southern birds lay more clutches due to the longer season, so I guess nature has its peculiar way to see that these beautiful little birds persist.

Once the egg laying process begins, this young pair has a sizeable investment in this brood.  I should be able to sit out on the patio and watch them and take photos without them spooking.  Just in the past few days has Daddy II evidenced he is making the connection that I am the source of the mealworm, not some mysterious iron object.  My old male could be a quarter-mile away, see me in the back yard and he would immediately come to see if he could mooch a meal.  Hopefully, this pair will bond with me as solidly as our original Mama and Daddy that we enjoyed for five years.

See more bluebird and nature photos on my flickr stream http://www.flickr.com/photos/reddirtpics/

First Brood Summary

  • First sign of nest building                09 March
  • Nest completed                                   15 March
  • First egg laid                                        18 March
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About lindell dillon

Lindell Dillon is retired and lives in Norman, OK. He grew up in Duncan, attended Cameron College and graduated from the University of Oklahoma. His interests include photography, nature, birding, and investing. Oklahoma Master Naturalist, alumnus Norman Police Department Citizens Academy.
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9 Responses to We have an egg!

  1. Rose Marie B says:

    Lindell,

    This is very exciting news! Yay Momma II!
    Spring has REALLY arrived in my heart now.

    Thank you again for sharing your bluebirds with us.

    Sending successful nesting thoughts to Red Dirt Hill! 🙂

  2. lindell dillon says:

    It’s a ways to the end of the journey when some babies fly out into the big world, but we are off to a start.

  3. Deirdra says:

    Can you please tell me how you feed mealworms? Do you use a feeder, and how far do you keep it from your bluebird box? I am a novice, had our first bluebird house up last year and had two successful broods. I’d love to feed mealworms if we are lucky enough to host bluebirds again this year. Thank you!

    • lindell dillon says:

      You want the bluebirds to get the worms and not another species. I wouldn’t place them out trying to lure bluebirds, I’d wait until some were hanging around the box, note the time of day and place the worms near the box. A wiggling mealworm will catch their eye. You can use anything for a feeder.

  4. Willis, Jackie says:

    I have a question that you probably could answer.. My bluebirds laid 5eggs and the female started sitting on them Saturday. When mama left the box I believe a sparrow came in and destroyed the eggs. A pair of house sparrows have been hanging around. I moved the box around in the yard today and immediately mom and dad came back. They hung out by the box all day and even defended the box from the sparrow. My question should I leave the old nest in? I had taken it out today but I put it back in this evening. What would you do? Also I plan on getting a trap and see if I can rid of this pair of sparrows because in the past they haven’t been a problem. Thanks for any suggestions.

    Sent from my iPad

    • lindell dillon says:

      If the female has already laid 5 eggs, it’s going to be awhile before she lays again. I’d probably remove the nest. Mama will get the nest-building urge again before she lays. This will also give you time to address the sparrow problem. Sialis.org has a section on sparrow control you might want to read.

  5. Ron Smith says:

    Lindell, your pictures are outstanding! I enjoy the bird pictures, but your wildlife pictures are also very good! I can tell you take a lot more time to set up a shot than I do, something I’m gonna start working on.

    • lindell dillon says:

      Thanks, Ron. Actually, I’m somewhat of a lazy photographer. I’m a naturalist first and a photographer second. Sometimes when I get home and process pics, I wish I’d done this or that better.

  6. lindell dillon says:

    Mama II laid her second egg today!

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