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Archive for the ‘Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Birds’ Category

It’s Week #5 already in the 2010 Survey along the South Mississippi Blue Bird Trail, in Long Beach.

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Blue Bird juveniles from the 2009 hatch.

Long Beach Blue Bird Trail Founder, John Lipscomb, Pass Christian, reports that Blue Bird activity in the nesting boxes along the trail, remains slow, way behind last year.

John reported right after the Friday, April 2 Survey, there were only 4 eggs so far in the 13 nesting boxes, although he did record 7 additional completed nests in the boxes during the survey. He advises that last year at this time in the season, there were already 22 birds hatched and 9 eggs in the nests.

John commented a couple of days after the Friday survey, “I am expecting the activity to heat up this week, as there are lots of nests now, and the weather is warmer.”

He added, “I saw an alligator last weekend, in the bayou right behind my home, so the temps are getting right.”

Trail nesting box results during the April 2 survey, included:
Nesting Box #1 – Nest built.
Nesting Box #2 – 4 Blue Bird eggs.
Nesting Box #3 – No activity.
Nesting Box #4 – Nest built.
Nesting Box #5 – No activity.
Nesting Box #6 – Nest built.
Nesting Box #7 – Nest built.
Nesting Box #7 – Nest built.
Nesting Box #9 – Some grass in box.
Nesting Box #10 – Twigs in box.
Nesting Box #11 – No activity.
Nesting Box #12 – Nest built.
Nesting Box #13 – Nest built.

Have a great week!

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With March 2010 now here and in full swing, it is time to start checking on Blue Bird nesting boxes on the Blue Bird Trail on the campus of the South Mississippi Regional Center in Long Beach, Mississippi.

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SMRC Blue Bird Trail founder Master Naturalist John Lipscomb launched the 2010 Blue Bird observation and reporting season last Friday, March 5, 2010 with his first checks of the Trail nesting boxes.

John had the following results to report for this first check: “We are off to a slow start this season, due to the cold, wet windy weather here on the Gulf Coast. We have a few pieces of grass and twigs in boxes 1, 4, 6 and 8. Just as comparison, last year at this time, we had 4 nests built and straw in another box. Nest building will get better once we get some warmer weather.”

Following is a quick summary of activity on the Blue Bird Trail during the 2009 Season:
86 eggs laid: 9 were sterile, 5 lost to predators. 67 babies total flew from the nests.

During the 2008 Season, 45 babies flew from the nesting boxes.

Have a good week!

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Welcome again, Blue Bird enthusiasts, to the Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Bird Trail, in Long Beach, and the Week #20 Trail Survey results.

During this past week on the Trail, the daily temperature average has moderated slightly, dropping into the low 90s to high 80s, a change that was welcomed by area residents.

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Two growing, Blue Bird babies in nesting box #8 on the Long Beach Blue Bird Trail this week.

The 2009 Trail Survey is nearing an end, with only a couple of weeks left, during which, the last of the 12 Blue Bird babies currently in the nesting boxes will have flown. If they all make it to that point, the total number of babies flying from the nest will be at 67 for the 2009 Season, 22 more birds than flew last season.

And for that, Master Naturalist Buddy John and I are thankful.

Here are Survey Totals this 2009 Season so far:

86 eggs laid: 9 have been sterile, 5 lost to a predator.

55 babies have flown the nest. – Last Year: 40 babies had flown the nest as of Week #18. Last Year Total Blue Bird babies flying from the nesting boxes: 45.

4 eggs in nesting boxes currently.

12 babies in nesting boxes currently.

Here are the results of Friday’s Blue Bird Trail Survey of the individual nesting boxes, on Friday morning, July 17, 2009:

Nesting Box #1 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #2 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #3 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #4 – 5 Blue Bird babies. – Last Week: 5 Blue Bird eggs.

Nesting Box #5 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #6 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #7 – 1 Blue Bird baby, 3 Blue Bird eggs. – Last Week: 1 Blue Bird baby, 3 Blue Bird eggs.

Nesting Box #8 – 2 Blue Bird Babies, possible predator problem. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird Babies, 1 Blue Bird egg.

Nesting Box #9 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #10 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #11 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #12 – 4 Blue Bird babies. – Last Week: 4 Blue Bird babies.

Nesting Box #13 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

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John and I will do Trail Survey #21 next Friday, and then John will do the final Trail Survey the following Friday, July 31, when I will be in Wisconsin visiting family and friends.

Have a great week!

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Well, here we are, heading for the middle of July, and it’s Week #19 of the 2009 Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Bird Trail Survey in Long beach.

It seems like we were just observing New Years Day, and the year is already half gone!

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Brand new Blue Bird babies were in the nesting boxes again this week on the Long Beach Blue Bird Trail.

Master Naturalist Buddy John and I did the Blue Bird Trail Survey in separate sections Friday morning, with John doing the first 7 nesting boxes, on the occupied part of campus, and your author checking nesting boxes 8-13 on the undeveloped, wooded north section.

After having only 17 eggs in the boxes in last Friday’s Trail Survey, this week we found that 9 of those eggs had hatched during the past week, and we had 3 boxes with a total of 9 new, tiny little Blue Bird babies looking for food from their parents. What a great sight!

Here are Survey Totals this 2009 Season so far:

86 eggs laid: 9 have been sterile, 4 lost to a predator.

55 babies have flown the nest. – Last Year: 39 babies had flown the nest as of Week #18. Last Year Total Blue Bird babies flying from the nesting boxes: 45.

8 eggs in nesting boxes currently.

9 babies in nesting boxes currently.

Here are the results of Friday’s Blue Bird Trail Survey of the individual nesting boxes, on Friday morning, July 10, 2009:

Nesting Box #1 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #2 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #3 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #4 – 5 Blue Bird eggs. – Last Week: 5 Blue Bird eggs.

Nesting Box #5 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #6 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #7 – 4 Blue Bird eggs. – Last Week: New nest built, 4 Blue Bird eggs. – Third Clutch.

Nesting Box #8 – 4 Blue Bird Babies. – Last Week: 1 Blue Bird Baby, 3 Blue Bird eggs.

Nesting Box #9 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #10 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #11 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #12 – 4 Blue Bird babies. – Last Week: 4 Blue Bird eggs.

Nesting Box #13 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

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Area lawns and vegetation here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast have greened up during the past few days, after a couple of downpours earlier in the week. So nice to see at last, after more than a month without any precipitation.

The next two Fridays, July 17, and July 24, John and I will do Weeks #20 and #21 Trail Surveys, and then early Saturday morning, July 25, I will leave on the long drive north up to my home in Wisconsin, for a lengthy visit there with family, and to participate in the Annual Boscobel, WI Civil War Weekend Reenactment.

I am looking forward to seeing most of my family during that time, including my daughter-in-law and my two grandsons, who will be visiting at her parents’ home just off I-55 on my trip north, about an hour north of St. Louis. So, I will stop off and see them during Sunday, the 26th, before continuing on home that evening.

Have a great week!

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Hello again fellow Blue Bird enthusiasts, and Welcome to Week #18 of the Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Bird Trail Survey, on the campus of the South Mississippi Regional Center, in Long Beach.

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Juvenile Blue Birds from the first hatch of the 2009 Season.

It has been yet another very hot week here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, but several of the Blue Bird pairs are still producing eggs. 5 new eggs were laid during the past week, bringing the total number of eggs in the nesting boxes to 17. There are no Blue Bird babies currently in the boxes.

Commenting on the Blue Bird Trail Survey this afternoon, Master Naturalist Buddy John, the founder of the Long Beach Blue Bird Trail, had several things to say: “It’s scorching, it’s no fun checking boxes this time of year. I’m very happy with what we’re doing. We’ve got 10 more birds that have flown this year already, than last year, and we have 17 eggs still in the nesting boxes. So, I think we could reasonably push 70 new birds this summer. That’s an increase of 25 from last year. So, I’m happy. I think we’ve done more than we have expected.”

Here are Survey Totals this 2009 Season so far:

86 eggs laid: 9 have been sterile, 4 lost to a predator.

55 babies have flown the nest. – Last Year: 36 babies had flown the nest as of Week #18. Last Year Total Blue Bird babies flying from the nesting boxes: 45.

17 eggs in nesting boxes currently.

0 babies in nesting boxes currently.

Here are the results of Friday’s Blue Bird Trail Survey of the individual nesting boxes, on Friday morning, July 3, 2009:

Nesting Box #1 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird babies flew the nest, 1 Blue Bird egg missing.

Nesting Box #2 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird babies flew the nest, 1 Blue Bird egg missing.

Nesting Box #3 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #4 – 5 Blue Bird eggs. – Last Week: New nest built, 1 Blue Bird egg.

Nesting Box #5 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #6 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – 4 Blue Bird babies flew the nest.

Nesting Box #7 – 4 Blue Bird eggs. – Last Week: New nest built, 4 Blue Bird eggs. – Third Clutch.

Nesting Box #8 – 4 Blue Bird eggs. – 4 Blue Bird eggs – Third Clutch.

Nesting Box #9 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #10 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #11 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #12 – 4 Blue Bird eggs. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird eggs – Third Clutch.

Nesting Box #13 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

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In other breaking news along the Blue Bird Trail this week, our friend, Master Naturalist Andrea K. retired on Wednesday, after 25 years of service on the campus of the SMRC. Her presence and contributions to our clients and staff, will be (are) sorely missed. Enjoy your retirement, Andrea!

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Master Naturalist Andrea K., of Hummingbird Trapping fame, (see the little hummer in the white mesh bag?) a staunch supporter of the Blue Bird Trail, and birding, in general, and more recently as Director of Interdisciplinary Programs at the SMRC, has retired this week after 25 years of dedicated service.

Your author will join Master Naturalist Buddy John and his two weekend guests, and Master Naturalist Andrea, and spouse, Ralph, of recent sky diving fame, tomorrow morning to attend the Annual Bay St. Louis Crab Fest, across the bay. That will be a real treat!

How hot has it been here? After a high of 96 earlier this afternoon, at 10:07pm here, it is 86 and clear.

Have a great Holiday weekend!

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Another very hot week has passed, here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Bird Trail, on the campus of the South Mississippi regional Center, in Long Beach, but despite the torrid weather, the Week #17 Trail Survey results showed that 10 more Blue Bird babies flew, and 12 new eggs, appeared in the nesting boxes, since the last Survey.

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Nesting box #12 has a brand new nest this week, the largest nest of any we have observed this season. This Blue Bird pair really outdid themselves in the construction of this nest, as the top of it comes right up to the entrance hole.

The flight of the 10 babies during the week, brought the 2009 Season Total to 55, 10 ahead of the entire 2008 Total of 45 babies flying the nest. And with 12 new eggs being laid during the past week, that flight total of 55 should go well over 60 by the end of the 2009 Season.

Here are Survey Totals this 2009 Season so far:

81 eggs laid: 9 have been sterile, 4 lost to a predator.

55 babies have flown the nest. – Last Year: 36 babies had flown the nest as of Week #17. Last Year Total Blue Bird babies flying from the nesting boxes: 45.

12 eggs in nesting boxes currently.

0 babies in nesting boxes currently.

Here are the results of Friday’s Blue Bird Trail Survey of the individual nesting boxes, on Friday morning, June 26, 2009:

Nesting Box #1 – 3 Blue Bird babies flew the nest, 1 Blue Bird egg missing. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird babies, 1 Blue Bird egg.

Nesting Box #2 – 3 large Blue Bird babies flew the nest, 2 Blue Bird eggs left – sterile. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird babies, 2 Blue Bird eggs.

Nesting Box #3 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #4 – New nest built, 1 Blue Bird egg. – Last Week: 4 Blue Bird babies flew the nest, removed old nest, cleaned.

Nesting Box #5 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty box, no activity.

Nesting Box #6 – 4 Blue Bird babies. – Last Week: 4 Blue Bird babies.

Nesting Box #7 – New nest built, 4 Blue Bird eggs. – Third Clutch. – Last Week: New nest built, 1 Blue Bird egg.

Nesting Box #8 – 4 Blue Bird eggs – Third Clutch. – Last Week: New nest built – Third Clutch.

Nesting Box #9 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty box, no activity.

Nesting Box #10 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty box, no activity.

Nesting Box #11 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: 5 Large Blue Bird babies flew the nest, removed nest, cleaned box.

Nesting Box #12 – 3 Blue Bird eggs – Third Clutch. – Last Week: New nest built – Third Clutch.

Nesting Box #13 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: 5 Large Blue Bird babies flew the nest, removed nest, cleaned box.

Have a great week, and here’s to another quiet hurricane season week in the tropics!

COME ON, COOLER WEATHER AND SOME RAIN!

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Welcome to Week #16 of the 2009 Mississippi Gulf Coast Blue Bird Trail Survey, on the campus of the South Mississippi Regional Center in Long Beach.

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These three large Blue Bird babies will fly from their nesting box any day now.

In a word, things along the Blue Bird Trail this week, were: HOT! The daily average high temperature this week hovered around 95-96 degrees. This is mid-June, not August. What the heck?

I had wondered if this extremely hot weather we are currently experiencing, might slow down or temporarily stop mating season activity among the Blue Birds here on the Trail. Data from today’s Trail Survey, however, doesn’t support that hypothesis, as we found 3 new Blue Bird nests in the nesting boxes, one with a new egg in it. Looks like the pairs are still mating and producing eggs.

Master Naturalist Buddy John expressed a measure of satisfaction today, with the results of the 2009 Blue Bird mating season, after tallying the Survey data, he noted enthusiastically that the current number of Blue Bird babies which have flown from the nesting boxes (45), now equals that total number of babies which flew from the nests during the entire 2008 Season. And, there are still 8 babies in the nesting boxes, as well as three new nests.

It will be interesting to see how long the 2009 Blue Bird mating season lasts, here on the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

Here are Survey Totals this 2009 Season so far:

First Clutch Totals:
33 eggs laid total, 5 of which were sterile.
28 Blue Bird babies flew the nest.

Second Clutch Totals (so far):
36 eggs laid total, 3 of which were lost to a predator.
6 eggs in nesting boxes currently. – Last Week: 6 eggs in nesting boxes.
8 babies in nesting boxes currently. – Last Week: 22 babies in nesting boxes.
17 Blue Bird babies flew the nest. – Last Week: 3 babies had flown the nest.

Third Clutch Totals (so far):
1 egg laid
3 nesting boxes have new nests in them.

2009 Season Totals (so far):

70 eggs laid: 5 have been sterile, 3 lost to a predator. – Last Week: 69 eggs. Last Year: 73 eggs laid, 12 sterile, 5 lost to predators, as of Week #16.

45 babies have flown the nest. – Last Week: 31 babies. Last Year: 33 babies had flown the nest as of Week #16.

7 eggs in nesting boxes currently. – Last Week: 7 eggs.

6 babies in nesting boxes currently. – Last Week: 22 babies.

Here are the results of Friday’s Blue Bird Trail Survey – June 19, 2009:

Nesting Box #1 – 3 Blue Bird babies, 1 Blue Bird egg. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird babies, 1 Blue Bird egg.

Nesting Box #2 – 2 large Blue Bird babies, 3 Blue Bird eggs. – Last Week: 2 Blue Bird babies, 3 Blue Bird eggs.

Nesting Box #3 – Empty nesting box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #4 – 4 Blue Bird babies flew the nest, removed old nest, cleaned. – Last Week: 4 Blue Bird babies.

Nesting Box #5 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty box, no activity.

Nesting Box #6 – 3 Blue Bird babies, 1 Blue Bird egg. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird babies, 1 Blue Bird egg.

Nesting Box #7 – New nest built, 1 egg – Third Clutch. – Last Week: 3 Blue Bird babies flew from the nest, 1 Blue Bird egg.

Nesting Box #8 – New nest built – Third Clutch. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #9 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty box, no activity.

Nesting Box #10 – Empty box, no activity. – Last Week: Empty box, no activity.

Nesting Box #11 – 5 Large Blue Bird babies flew the nest, removed nest, cleaned box. – Last Week: 5 Large Blue Bird babies.

Nesting Box #12 – New nest built – Third Clutch. – Last Week: Empty nesting box, no activity.

Nesting Box #13 – 5 Large Blue Bird babies flew the nest, removed nest, cleaned box. – Last Week: 5 Large Blue Bird babies.

Have a great week!

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