Bluebird and Small Cavity Nester Conservation
Sialis - Bluebirds and other small cavity nesters


House Wren "Attacks" Nestbox Monitor

Click on "play" button in lower left to play (35 second video)

It is very unusual for monitors to get "attacked" when checking a nestbox. This House Wren was MAD. (Babies had hatched inside.)

It is common for birds to swoop at a monitor (Tree Swallows get pretty close but I have not heard reports of them "connecting,"), vocalize (chickadees), or chatter and bill clack (bluebirds, which will also swoop, although not as close as Tree Swallows.) Once at dusk (not a good time) I was checking a box, and stood in front of the hole as I opened the door (bad idea.) I startled a roosting nuthatch, which flew straight out and his bill hit me in the forehead. I survived. But usually you have nothing to worry about. If you are really scared, wear a hat or carry a broom.

See more info on how to monitor, and links to information on House Wrens below.

You can see that this box is close to the forest edge - this is House Wren habitat. If you wish to deter House Wrens, try moving boxes as far away as possible from trees/shrubbery - at least 50-100 feet - farther is better. Wren Guards may also help protect other birds eggs and young from House Wren attacks. They are installed after the first egg is laid and can be used on chickadee and bluebird nests.

Video by Jeff Hansen of Topeka

More Information:

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    When it comes to bluebirding, if you think you've seen it all, you're probably wrong.
    - Bet Zimmerman

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