An adult male bluebird showed up in the yard just a day after Daddy II was brutally killed by a roadrunner. He arrived in the afternoon and just followed Mama III around chortling to her. She was too busy catching bugs to pay him much mind.
The second day the male showed a definite interest in the babies. I saw him fly to the box several times after Mama delivered a bug and peer inside. When I put out mealworms, Mama delivered them to the babies and this guy just had a free breakfast. I wondered if he would adopt the babies. His history is unknown. Is he a young bird that has never mated– an older bird that has lost a mate? Does he have the instincts to take care of young?
I think my question was answered this morning. I sat out with my coffee and watched the box for awhile after putting out some mealworms. Mama came in and immediately fed the babies and removed fecal sacs. The male bluebird never delivered a mealworm, but I watched him bring in three spiders and feed to the babies. Unbelievable another male could arrive so soon and that he would actually adopt young that weren’t his. And as a bonus he is already protective of the box from sparrows and starlings. Mama may have a keeper! I’m officially proclaiming this bird as Daddy III. The bluebird soap opera continues on the reddirt hill. Never a dull moment. I’m grateful that I’m just an observer and chronicler of the saga, I could never write a script like the one Nature does.
Total chicks fledged from this site is 67.
Third Brood 2016
- First sign of nest building 15 June
- Three eggs 21 June
- Three eggs hatch 04 July