Did you know?

Here’s an interesting tidbit about how bluebirds keep their nests clean:

In order to keep their nests clean, most baby songbirds give off their waste in what is called a “fecal sack.” These little pouches of poop are mostly white and are encased in a tough mucous membrane. After being fed, the baby bird will turn its back to the parent and “hand” it this sack. The parent bird will then fly away with the sack and drop it a short distance away from the nest. (And I thought dealing with diapers was gross.)
It you think that is disgusting, this next bit of info will curl your toes. Instead of flying away with the waste, many birds, including bluebirds, will often eat the fecal sacks. Now there’s a pleasant thought. Perhaps that will explain why bluebirds always carry a pak of Tic-Tacs. Story credit

So, here’s momma bird dropping off a mealworm to Zowie
and picking up the fecal sack

  1. <![CDATA[Sean]]>’s avatar

    Wow! I did not know that. Thanks for the cool information about bluebirds. We have a pair that hang around our house. I fixed the door on the blue bird house this year when we saw them looking at it. The hole was chewed by squirrels and was larger than they like it. I put a new door on and may have deterred them from using it this year.

  2. <![CDATA[Jeni Q]]>’s avatar

    You should make sure the front of the house (the door) is the right depth.
    It basically works out so that the door is double-thickness from the rest of the house.
    http://www.sialis.org/nestboxguide.htm

  3. <![CDATA[Jenny]]>’s avatar

    I bought a box this year, but nobody seems to want to make use of it. When you posted about the birdy-birds last you put in a cool link about the development. That’s where I read about the fecal sacs! If it makes your readers feel better, the little birds can’t digest everything, so what’s left in the poop bags is very food-y still.