The North American Bluebirds
Eastern Bluebird -- Western Bluebird -- Mountain Bluebird
How can you look at a bluebird and not feel a little bit better about the day? Their shimmering blue coats and cheery calls make these feathered wonders popular wherever they are found.
Bluebirds are cavity nesters. As land has been cleared for new developments and wooden fence posts replaced with metal, the number of nesting sites available has been greatly reduced, with a negative effect on bluebird populations.
Select from the menu on the left to learn about bluebirds and setting up your own bluebird box.
Western Bluebirds - male (left) and female (right)
Mountain Bluebirds - male (left) and female (right)
Aggravating the situation has been the introduction into the United States of two very aggressive species, the European Starling and the House Sparrow. Both of these species compete with the bluebird for nesting spots and have had significant impact on the bluebird population. Starlings also compete with bluebirds over the fall food supply of berries and seeds, with large flocks of starlings often stripping a local supply in a short period of time.
Bluebirds belong to the thrush family, (Turdidae), which includes the wood thrush, robin and more than six hundred species worldwide. Bluebirds, however, are found only in North America.
Bluebirds adapt well to man-made nesting boxes. Bluebird boxes and trails play an important role in supporting local populations and are perhaps vital to the species' long term success. Trails are easy to develop and are both fun and satisfying to operate.
In addition to the information on this site, we recommend the Sam's Guide to Bluebirds. The two disc set has additional information on bluebird boxes and managing your bluebird trail. You'll also find short movies showcasing the beauty and lives of all three bluebird species. Also included are:
- Plans for building your own bluebird box.
- A quick reference card will assist you in purchasing bluebird boxes and setting up your bluebird box or trail.