Breeding Bird Studies
The Madison Bluebird Trails are an ongoing Madison Bird City Partners initiative. Trails and boxes are located, installed and monitored weekly using recommendations and protocols established by BRAW, the Bluebird Restoration Association of Wisconsin (braw.org). Annual summary report data is submitted to BRAW to document success and continually improve practices and to the eBird database at the Cornell Lab of Ornithology for scientific analysis and application. The Bird Buddies are advised by Kent Hall with BRAW, Andy Paulios with Wisconsin DNR, Mark Martin with Madison Audubon, and other experts. Paul Noeldner and Mitchell Thomas are liaison for the Biocore Trail.
Bluebirds suffered major population declines with loss of native forests. These losses have been reversed with the help of Bluebird Restoration of Wisconsin (BRAW). The organization developed successful Bluebird box designs, locations, and predator control. These Bluebird boxes have benefited Wisconsin’s Eastern Bluebird population and given enjoyment to thousands of people. Although Bluebirds are the target bird for these boxes, other cavity nesting song birds in the Biocore Prairie also benefit from them, including Tree Swallows, House Wrens, Black-capped Chickadees.
Bluebird Trail Monitoring 2015
6/27/2015… BB–1 success , 1 lost; TS–4 success; HW– 1 success
The battle over Box BB7 continues. Now the nest holds both BB and TS eggs!
April 22, 2015 – by Mitchell Thomas
BB3: House wren - nest present, nest to tall to see into.
BB4: House wren - Nest present, no sign of fledglings or mother
BB5: House wren - Nest present, no eggs
BB6: Empty; bird house needs a nail
BB7: Empty; bird house needs a nail
BB8: House wren - Nest present, empty
BB9: Eastern Bluebird – Nest present, lots of bees
BB10: Empty, bird house needs nail
BB11: Empty, bird house needs nail
BB12: Empty, bird house needs nail
BB13: Empty, bird house needs nail
April 26, 2015 - Paul Noeldner noticed some reshuffling in the housing market - some Bluebirds have moved in.
March: Spring cleaning & repairing of boxes- Paul Noeldner, Pat Becker, Will Waller
Early April 2015- Pat Becker
3 empty boxes.
8 boxes with old sparrow nests- removed
1 box with a currently occupied nest and two
eggs, the parent sparrow flew off-
nest and eggs were removed
1 box in which there were two deceased/
dessicated adult swallows, no nest
2014 Season Summary for the Biocore Blue Bird trail
Box Style: NABS Peterson
Predator Protection: PVC, Aluminum
Species BB 1st BB 2nd BB 3rd TS HW
Attempts 6 2 6 14
Eggs 24 1 29 43
Hatchlings 9 20 32
Fledglings 7 18 29
Successful 2 4 6
15 Bluebird Trails were maintained and monitored in the Madison area. They produced a toral of 97 little Bluebird Fledglings. Our first attempt on the Biocore Trail, yielding 7 fledglings, was quite successful, and we look forward to the 2015 season.
Biocore Prairie Bluebird Trail consists of 13 Bluebird Boxes mounted on predator resistant steel poles around the Biocare Prairie and through the Community Gardens. The boxes are located near walking paths as shown on the map. They are easy to monitor and maintain.
The BRAW design Bluebird boxes are luxury boxes, considering that the cedar wood used for building them is more than 100 years old and from the attic floor of a Wisconsin home.