As I drove up to the house from work tonight, I saw a golf-ball-sized gray ball on the ground where I park and two bluebirds on the peak of the garage. Well I’d never seen the bluebirds sitting up there before. I got out of the car and watched the bluebird house for several minutes to see if the parents would be feeding the babies (third batch of the season) or if the babies might have fledged (in which case I wanted to watch them soar).
Nothing. I turned around to go into the house and “Oh my! Oh no! The gray ball was a baby bluebird!” Sitting inches from the front tire of the car. I thanked my angels that I did not drive over it. I just happened to have my camera in hand and quickly took the above photo.
Now what? This bird’s feathers have not grown out enough to fly yet. What happened? I surmise that it crawled up to the bluebird house entrance hole and dropped / fell out. Since it could not fly it must have hopped the great distance of 25 feet to where I found it. (Over the past couple days I’ve glimpsed some movement at that entrance when the parents were not around and thought that fledging time must be soon.)
So I got out the ladder, set it up near the bluebird house, opened the side door and peeked in. Yep . . . baby bluebirds still in the nest. I couldn’t tell how many because they were all scrunched down being very still. Good instinct.
It immediately flapped its wings and I blocked it from falling back out of the side of the bluebird house that I had opened to access the nest. It pushed itself into the corner and stayed still. (The exit hole is just to the right in the photo — siblings to the left.)
I closed up the bluebird house, removed the ladder and walked back to my house. The parents quickly flew to the wire near the house (their customary lookout point) and seemed ready to go into it. I waited and listened as both bluebirds continued calling non-stop for quite some time. They seemed reluctant to enter the house while they could still see me.