This year at our home, we have been watching the bluebirds since early spring. These delightful and delicate birds of the air are a marvelous example of diligence in preparing to raise their young and valiant as they fight the natural foes in their environment.
The bluebird house that my father-in-love made for me years ago was immediately occupied, but not without a lot of angry squabbling with the English house sparrows!
In our second bluebird house, the sparrows have won out. There is no sign of our sweet blue and buff feathered friends now as they have been driven off to find a new nest site. Even after repeated removals of the sparrow’s nesting materials, we couldn’t discourage these marauders, much to our dismay!
Here are some photos from 2011, some through the windows of our nest :>
We observed as the male bluebird started scouting out nest site locations in February and March, but have read that it is the female that makes the final choice for the nest site. That sounds just like a human couple, doesn’t it?
It took weeks of gathering soft grasses and pine needles, and during this time the intensity of the fights with the sparrows increased. The parents must stand ground determinedly for their nest and then for their young!
By the 14th of May, 2011, we were delighted and grateful to find 5 dull blue eggs all in a cluster.
My husband kindly volunteered to open and close the movable front panel of the birdhouse once the eggs were laid so I could have my hands free to shoot some close-ups. It was our first experience in this kind of photography; the Mama and Papa let down their guard after a few days as we did them no harm.
We used care not to touch the box or nest with our bare hands. My husband always wore gloves.
Both parents fed the nestlings at least twice an hour. The activity at this point was constant and so much fun to watch! Do you think they feed their babies through the night like we Mamas sometimes do?
It gave us a richer appreciation of what both Father and Mother do as parents. The birds have been given their instincts from the Creator to raise a brood; we have been give the whole Word of God~ the Bible~ and the Holy Spirit as our guide. I wouldn’t want to do it without divine guidance!
“As for God, his way is perfect; the word of the LORD is flawless. He is a shield for all who take refuge in him.” ~2 Samuel 22:31
The birds have weeks to raise their young; we humans have a few fleeting years, gone so quickly.
As the called of Christ, we must be ever diligent to model servant-hood, mold their hearts to see their need for the Savior, develop an internal self-governor in the power of the Holy Spirit, and to teach them the whole Word of God. Let us be on our knees every day seeking wisdom, mercy, and grace for this marvelous and daunting task.
Someday your children will leave your nest. Until then, stand firm in the armor of the Lord as spoken of in Ephesians 6: 10-18. With prayer and fasting and His grace, we can do this noble job set before us to raise up a godly seed.
”I will utter hidden things, things from of old—
things we have heard and known,
things our ancestors have told us…
we will tell the next generation
the praiseworthy deeds of the Lord,
his power, and the wonders he has done.
He decreed statutes for Jacob
and established the law in Israel,
which he commanded our ancestors
to teach their children,
so the next generation would know them,
even the children yet to be born,
and they in turn would tell their children.
Then they would put their trust in God
and would not forget his deeds
but would keep his commands.
They would not be like their ancestors —
a stubborn and rebellious generation,
whose hearts were not loyal to God,
whose spirits were not faithful to him.”
~Psalm 78: 2-8
For free directions to build a sturdy bluebird house with only (1) 6′ length of 1″ x 6″ cedar, go here. The frequent checking of bluebird nests is said to discourage sparrows from killing the young and even sometimes an adult! For a bit of interesting history on sparrows and ‘how to’ on bluebird nests, go here.