Bluebirds Project

blue feather Photos & Movie

blue feather Altricial or precocial

blue feather Feeding

blue feather Song

blue feather Camouflage

blue feather Winter


blue feather Charting eggs ele

blue feather All about Birds ele/ms

blue feather Frayer Model Birds - doc. | pdf

blue feather Collecting data ele/ms

blue feather Compare/Contrast

blue feather Food Web

blue feather Life Cycles ele/ms

blue feather Mapping Birds ele/ms/hs

blue feather Variables ele/ms/hs

blue feather Feather Facts ms/hs

blue feather Scientific Thinking ele/ms/hs

blue feather Systems & Controls ms/hs

blue feather Science Journal Entry ms/hs

blue feather Make Puzzle ele/ms/hs

blue feather Ecology Vocabulary ms/hs

blue feather Classification ms/hs

blue feather Resources

spaceBluebird video at NGS

spaceEggs Fact Hunt

spaceBirds Book online

spaceBirds Facts Activity

spaceLearn about Nests


spaceCitizen Science Projects

spaceFields, Meadows EcoUnit

Other Nestbox residents:

spaceTree Swallows

spaceEnglish Sparrow


spaceWren Chicks




English Sparrow Nest Photo

Peek in a English Sparrow's nest box:

Notice the canopy of grasses over the eggs!

There were many clues this is an English Sparrow's nest.

One - there is a canopy of grasses over the top of the cup.

Two - there are feathers and trash in the nest. English Sparrows will add bits of plastic trash to their nest.

Three - there were several white, with brown speckles, eggs in the nest. Finally, two english sparrows were observed coming and going from the box.

English Sparrows (Passer domesticus) or House Sparrows as they are commonly called are a non-native bird. They were released in America around 1850. They were released in hopes of them eating bugs. Ironically, they are primarily seed eaters.

Later it was discovered that they aggressively compete with native, cavity-nesting birds like bluebirds. Male sparrows have been observed destroying eggs, killing nestlings, and sometimes killing incubating females in an effort to take over an occupied nest box. This competition for nesting sites has contributed to the decline of the bluebird.

Many bluebirders do not allow English Sparrows to successfully nest in their nest boxes.

English sparrows are an unwelcome, nonnative pest bird.

To learn more about house sparrows, visit Cornell University's bird web site:


blue featherOther potential nest box inhabitants:

Tree Swallow / English Sparrow / Wren / Nuthatch / Chickadee

Main Bluebird page / Bluebird photos

BirdSleuth: Investigating Evidence - free materials from Cornell University

Nature / Internet Hunts / Pennsylvania Projects / Puzzles and Projects / Computers / Mrs. O's House / Site Map

2002 Cindy O'Hora, Updated 3/2007, Posted May 2002 address

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 2.5 License.

Aligned with the Pennsylvania Academic Standards for Science & Technology, Reading, Writing, Ecology & Environment, Mathematics