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Greatbluehopefuls nest box 2013-2018 - Kildare,Ireland
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WildlifePaul



Joined: 28 Apr 2015
Posts: 1621
Location: Liverpool

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use a scraper then have a few wet kitchen roll pieces to give the floor a little wipe. I would 100% advise you to clean it for spring you could leave it all winter but for spring 100% clean it. Kathy is right that some females will clean it but some also won't why waste your time cleaning a messy box if there's more suitable nesting places? Think that's what one my females thought back in 2014 haha. Can't say I blame her.
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Greatbluehopeful



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 536
Location: Ireland

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ok...noted!

Thankfully, my nestbox is in an excellent spot for cleaning/maintenance...I just need to climb out my upstairs window onto the extension roof, do the job, and back in before I'm noticed.

So terrified of scaring them away...so hopeful that 2018 will be my 1st successful year.

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Greatbluehopeful
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blueeyedchick



Joined: 15 Mar 2013
Posts: 1193
Location: LEICESTERSHIRE

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PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:23 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your post on my thread GBH. I like you have a soft spot for Gt's and live in hope each year they will share the garden with a Bluey.

Paul is right in as much as some females will give up cleaning and find a different site that's if they can find one! However, I clean mine out, if bad, before nesting begins. If it's already been cleaned with boiling water in the autumn I will just dampen the floor and scrape out with a narrow putty knife I keep for the job and then sweep out all debris with an old paint brush. Any remaining bits are easy to remove by the female once rooster has left.
Hope this gives you some idea as everyone has a different method but rule of thumb don't use any chemicals.

Kathy x
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Greatbluehopeful



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 536
Location: Ireland

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PostPosted: Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Kathy...lots of great tips there from you both. Yes, bleach and other such chemicals out of the question!!

Staying darker much later in the mornings...my little fella didn't leave till 7:45 today...thats a full 20mins more since last week.

This bird mostly likes to roost up on the side of the box...there is two resin windows on each side, so he sits up in the recess of the window, preferring the left hand side of the box always. He never jumps down to the floor of the box during the night, only when dawn comes.

Here's a terrible video of him leaving this morning - my PC didn't behave just at the moment I pressed record... Rolling Eyes
https://youtu.be/yd02HmtOgYw

Most notably there is a buzz of activity this morning...we've had two major storms this week, Hurricane Ophelia, followed in hot pursuit by storm Brian. It is the first dry bright morning we've had and the birds are going nuts in the garden. Lots of exploring and flitting around the place...plenty of visits to the box too. Every few minutes, by all sorts of birds...one of note was a nuthatch, looking for insects I imagine.

Some squabbling at the entrance hole too. A Great tit is very interested. Although I do love Great Tits, I hope my little Blue tit guy won't be ousted out of his nice spot, now that he's become establised.

Here's the mess, 1 week later

Messy house - One week later 22 10 2017
Messy house - One week later 22 10 2017
Poster: Greatbluehopeful, viewed 5 Time(s)

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Greatbluehopeful
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Greatbluehopeful



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 536
Location: Ireland

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 7:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi all,

Last night along came my birdie as normal, however, this bird did a lot of checking out the box before settling down. I thought this was unusual behavior. It was pecking away at the poo too...

Is this a female visitor? If so, then where is the other bird. Surely, he would have arrived in on top of her. I didn't hang around to watch too long, so perhaps that did happen?


I'm not sure if this is the same bird.
I'm not sure if this is the same bird.
Poster: Greatbluehopeful, viewed 4 Time(s)


This bird was sleeping to the front of the box this morning...also unusual, as he normal hangs off the side window. Also no additional poo to report. I'm convinced this little bird was a female last night.

Here is a video of it leaving this morning.
https://youtu.be/ShP6IuXEpYQ

Or I am just looking too closely!!!! lol!!!

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WildlifePaul



Joined: 28 Apr 2015
Posts: 1621
Location: Liverpool

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 23, 2017 3:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sounds possible, That is what happened last year in one of my boxes. Female had fight with male and he didn't come back she started roosting then used the box down the wall for her nest.
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SueP



Joined: 08 May 2008
Posts: 1825
Location: Ferndown, Dorset.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 24, 2017 2:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

All the interest is looking very positive for the coming season GBH. So hope it happens for you (and me) in the spring. My box remains clean - and empty lol.
Sue
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Greatbluehopeful



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 536
Location: Ireland

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 8:46 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi all, just in quickly to update my bird diary.

So, my little bird was like clock work... in at dusk, out at dawn until two days ago when he didn't return.

I watched for two days but no sign of him. So I went to investigate.

Bird gone
Bird gone
Poster: Greatbluehopeful, viewed 6 Time(s)


I believe it was initially a male who was roosting and it was him who made all the mess, but then I'm now positive it was actually a female who continued to use the box as the mess did not get worse. Plus this bird was seen to be pecking at the bits and throwing them to one side.

So yesterday morning I opened the box. A wasp flew out....that was a surprise. Perhaps this was the reason for the sudden departure of my bird.

So while I was there I decided to clean out the box. I vacuumed up the bits and bobs...leaving white residue.


Opened box to investigate - A Wasp flew out!
Opened box to investigate - A Wasp flew out!
Poster: Greatbluehopeful, viewed 10 Time(s)



There was a bluetit very interested in my activity. He was flitting about while I was working away. Could this be my bird?

I also notice my resin windows were slightly loose where the silicone was so I secured them in place again with panel pins, making claws to hold the window in place.


Box cleaned out and ready for next occupant
Box cleaned out and ready for next occupant
Poster: Greatbluehopeful, viewed 9 Time(s)


Here is the box now, clean and ready for use again.

Within 5 minutes of coming back downstairs I had a visit to the front of the box. Nothing went in but there was some snooping and pecking being done from the outside hole. I didn't see what bird it was, but I must assume it was my curious blue tit friend.

Unfortunately, no return of any visitors last night.

I'll keep watching daily.

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Greatbluehopeful
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WildlifePaul



Joined: 28 Apr 2015
Posts: 1621
Location: Liverpool

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 08, 2017 12:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One of mine didn't come into rooster for 3 nights or 4 nights was one of them, I thought it had moved on but its roosting again now and back every night again so don't give up hope it coming back.

It does look by the lack of droppings it was female, Fingers crossed she comes back keep us posted.

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SueP



Joined: 08 May 2008
Posts: 1825
Location: Ferndown, Dorset.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 09, 2017 7:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hope your rooster returns GBH, Fingers crossed
Sue
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Greatbluehopeful



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 536
Location: Ireland

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 7:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi all...

Well, here I am again....Year 6...still wishing and hoping. Fingers crossed

My little rooster from mid Autumn never came back. I'm watching daily for any activity at the nestbox at all...absolutely nothing at all.

But...the box is cleaned out and ready to go. The new hard resin windows I installed after last season are in place, so I'm hoping they will make the difference this year.

There is loads of bird activity in the garden, and I was vigilant to make sure my feeders were constantly filled since last summer....so I think that has paid off.

For the first time in many years, I have several blue tits - not just one or two popping in, the same pair of great tits from last year (I'm certain it is them!) and trio of coal tits....as well as the usual sparrows, greenfinches, chaffinches and goldfinches.

But so far, just no interest in the box. Rolling Eyes

Anyway, just wishing you all the best for the 2018 nesting year. I may not be posting, but I will be watching your progress in the background as I always do, every year.

Good luck guys....and to quote from a series of books I have enjoying reading just recently:
"may the odds be ever in your favour." Wink

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Greatbluehopeful
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WildlifePaul



Joined: 28 Apr 2015
Posts: 1621
Location: Liverpool

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 10, 2018 1:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have my fingers crossed for you this year! Surely 2018's got to be the year for you 6 years without a nest is such a long time you deserve it! Fingers crossed Fingers crossed Fingers crossed
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hfriel



Joined: 19 Apr 2010
Posts: 667
Location: Dublin

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PostPosted: Sat Feb 17, 2018 2:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi GBH
Nice to hear from you again!

I don't know about anybody else, but visits to my nest box have been almost non existent lately. Lots of birds around singing beautifully , but then the weather has been so cold and windy here.

Hopefully we will all see some more interest soon and that this will be your lucky year GBH Four leaf clover Four leaf clover Four leaf clover

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Greatbluehopeful



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 536
Location: Ireland

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 03, 2018 7:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi all...well...what a mad few days weatherwise with snow storm Emma!!!

I have been home from work since Wednesday afternoon.

I live in rural Kildare, Ireland and that was one of the areas that got hit the worst with the snow storm. I am literally snowed in. The snow is half way up my livingroom window!! Cars are covered, roads and paths can't be defined at all.

Its absolutely beautiful and it has been a great adventure these past few days.

There is a great sense of comradery in the community and I can only imagine what it must have felt like back in olden days before cars and trucks - bicycles even!!! Everyone walking every where, smiles on peoples faces...people saying "Hello" without you thinking they're looking for you to buy something from them!! lol!!!! Laughing

The snow men we built the other day are nearly completely covered, only their heads can be seen! They look very sad.

Anyway, I have had the TV screen on continuously and I only got one landing on the box...nothing went in...whatever it was, was probably just searching for insects or perhaps it was a bigger bird. Rolling Eyes

I have been feeding the poor ole birds constantly...crushing up peanuts with a rolling pin and mixing them with suet, seeds and grated cheese and leaving it on a plate in the snow.

It has been a feeding frenzy of the most epic proportions! Shocked

I have had the most amazing display of birds in the garden, all the usual suspects:
Great tits, Blue tits, Coal tits, Chaffinches, Starlings, Robins, Linnets, Greenfinches, Sparrows, Dunnocks, Blackbirds, Goldfinches, Wagtails, Redpolls, Thrushes, Siskins/Serins (never know which is which), long tailed Tits, Wrens, one male Blackcap spotted....and even a friendly rat!!!

We have had uncountable Bullfinches in our cherry blossom trees out on the road. Gorgeous to watch.

Two birds that I have never seen before came down frequently to feed, a Redwing and a Fieldfare, both are fairly similar looking birds but when seen side by side, they are quite different colourwise. They are the same size as a large thrush.

I did get pictures, but I was mad I didn't have a good camera...those pictures would have been amazing.

Anyway, all in all, its been a lovely few days. I could get used to the slower pace of life like this.

Really hoping all this increased activity to the garden has brought prospective house hunters though.... nothing like visiting a new area and imagining yourself living there!!!
Could I be lucky this year???? Pray

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Greatbluehopeful
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SueP



Joined: 08 May 2008
Posts: 1825
Location: Ferndown, Dorset.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 05, 2018 3:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yes, yes, yes GBH - well I hope so anyway. Not like you're short of bird action. Sounds amazing with all the varieties you mention. I get robins, blackbirds and just the occasional blue tit (though I have had a pair showing a great deal of interest in one of my boxes over the past few weeks Fingers crossed )
Sounds as though you certainly had your share of snow. Amazing how people do pull together and help each other at times like this. We had quite a bit for us, about 6" and drifts of double this in places, but certainly nothing like you have experienced.
Shame I can't box a bit of Paul's luck and send to you, but I do wish you big big heaps of luck this year.
Sue
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