Claim Straw

claim straw? Photo by Bet Zimmerman
Claim straw? Photo by Bet Zimmerman

Some people believe that bluebirds and Tree Swallows will place a “claim straw” in a box to signal their intent to nest there.

Nestboxes that are EMPTY may indicate to a potential scout that the site is “available.”  That is one reason why removing House Sparrow nests without trapping the adults can create a dangerous situation.


Distinguishing the signal from the noise requires both scientific knowledge and self-knowledge.
– Nate Silver


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