April 1995

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Bluebirds of Happiness


William Garrison

It has been aptly said that the bluebird "carries the sky on his back." Everyone who spots one of these most delightful creatures will have to agree.

Bluebirds are all plusses. They are beautiful, have a pretty song, they eat bugs, and live peacefully with other birds.

Tragically, bluebirds showed a sharp decline in population a few years back which stimulated interested persons to endeavor to save them. One of the suspected reasons for the downward slide was the loss of nesting sites partly due to the invention of the chain saw which made the cutting of dead hollow trees easy. Countless individuals have helped our feathered friends by setting up nesting boxes of every style and description.

Where there is a need we Americans inevitably form an organization. In New York we have a very live, active New York State Bluebird Society that is doing a most effective job. A monumental task they have undertaken is to establish "The Route 20 Bluebird Research Trail." As an initial effort the society has installed and compiled results from 160 boxes in Schoharie County which is just a beginning of a planned string of boxes the entire length of Route 20.

On a much more modest local scale we at Morning Glory Farm have undertaken to create a "Bluebird Walk" along Bean's Station Road. So far, after saturating our own acreage, we are in the process of erecting some 30 more blue Peterson style nesting boxes along the road in open areas.

One peculiarity of bluebirds is that they don't like to live close to their own kind, so boxes should be about 100 yards apart. They will happily co-exist with tree swallows—who are also desirable birds—so boxes are often put up in pairs.

We saw our first azure harbinger of spring Sunday, March 12th. What could be a more welcome indicator that winter is over and a new cycle of life has begun?

Morning Glory Farm
7866 Bean Station Road
Hammondsport, NY 14840
New York Bluebird Society
123 Wood Dale Drive
Ballston Lake, N. Y. 12019
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