It has been a crazy week at one of our Bluebird sites. There were signs of vandalism to multiple nest boxes, including the complete loss of one. We expect problems for our boxes every year, but we always hope not to have any.
We placed most of the nest boxes in relative open areas at parks or trail ways. There are nearby baseball fields where the grass is mowed close to the area of the nest boxes. This keeps the boxes in view from a distance. We situated two boxes on a berm that was somewhat secluded and soon became overrun by weeds. These two boxes saw the most trouble; both were mysteriously pulled out of the ground and one has gone missing. We suspect someone took advantage of the weedy cover and decided to cause some mischief.
Another box, in pain site, was missing from the pole and found on the ground in some tall grass. We know that it was human intervention because we bolted the boxes to the pole and raccoons have a hard time using wrenches. This is all compounding on evidence that some boxes were emptied of their contents in between checks.
It is very disturbing to find our hard work and the resident wildlife maltreated. We have contacted our town supervisor and the sheriff’s department is aware of the situation. We are also trying to inform the public of our predicament. So, we decided to replace some boxes and make sure they are all in clear view and also placed a sign on each nest box to let the public know that we are monitoring the boxes. The sign contains information on how to contact us in case a Good Samaritan finds any damage to the nest boxes.
We only hope we will not have any more incidents.