Tuesday, June 29, 2010

House fight - a Battle for a Home

Yesterday the day was too hot for great fishing on Henrys Lake, so on my way home I was taking pictures of some birds.  Many of the old Bluebird nest boxes have been taken over by Tree Swallows.  But a new one had been placed on a pole and the Mountain Bluebirds had a nest of babies there.  The male was guarding the nest while the female came in with some food for the young.


One of the pair would stay perched on the house while the other went for food.


Once when both left for food, a Tree Swallow came and landed on the nest box. It appeared that its mate
tried to tell it that the box was occupied.


They actually got into a fight with them locking bills and the aggressor clawing the other with its feet.



But the swallow wanting the nest box was not convinced until it was attacked by the male bluebird.



The battle was claw and bill combat, but I was unable to stop the action or catch up to them.  But the male continued to fly sorties around the nest box.



He finally landed as the female brought in some food for the babies.



He stayed guard until the babies were fed and the female left the nest box.



This battle over a home between the bluebirds and the swallows happened three times while I watched for a half an hour.

Just another experience in the wilds of Idaho.

17 comments:

Sunny said...

I'm so glad you were there with your camera. These are great images of action I would not normally see.
☼ Sunny

Jann said...

Really fabulous, sharp sequence photos! Too bad someone grafitti'd the bird house...but anyway, it's always a priviledge to get to witness an event unfold with wildlife, isn't it. Well done!

Veronica Wald said...

Wow, what an interesting photo sequence and story!!

Monts said...

Bill Great sequence of action shots and beautiful birds to boot. That male Bluebird is a cracker.

The Early Birder said...

Magical action moments....far, far better than 'reality TV' which I don't watch. Cracking shots Bill.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Wow, better than the golden gloves fight...Great narrative and photographs! I witnessed something similar recently with House Wrens in a nest house and Sparrows demanding they leave, so they could take over. When that did not happen, they went after American Robins on their nest with one young one. Lazy guys~

Susan said...

Phew!!! So glad you captured this,and so glad the bluebirds prevailed...(though I like swallows too...looks like more boxes are needed, and that's a good thing!)

Wilma said...

I understand the blueirds defending thier nest box, but what's up with the swallows fighting each other? That shot of the male bluebird with the outspread wings and tail is fabulous!

cheers,
Wilma

Grandma Yellow Hair said...

Honestly believe these are the best pictures of birds on a site ever. What great photos!
I have ask what is inscribed on the boxes. I can make out USA only.
Love the previous post of the wild flowers
What a interesting life you live
Maggie

Gaelyn said...

Such an awesome encounter to watch. Don't usually see birds fighting much. Love that capture of the male bluebird in flight.

NatureFootstep said...

this would have been a great entry for BPW :)

Great story about fighting for a home.

Yogi♪♪♪ said...

Great photos. Mother nature is tough.

Betsy from Tennessee said...

Hi Bill, I love this post... It reminds me of one that I did in Spring -when the Chickadees took over the Bluebird house... Talk about noise--and commotion.

Great pictures of your birds...
Betsy

J Bar said...

Great captures.
Sydney - City and Suburbs

Jodi said...

We use to live on the edge of the Gila National Forest in New Mexico and I just loved watching the Bluebirds. I even kept meal-worms on hand for them during the nesting season. I miss them terribly now as they are not here in our part of Arizona. I thoroughly enjoyed this story and the pictures are just beautiful.

Janie said...

Great action at the bird feeder! You captured it all wonderfully.

Oz Girl said...

I'm glad the bluebirds prevailed... but the poor things, having to constantly protect their home and babies!!