[Mnbird] Wing men

DONALD GRUSSING Owner cdrussin at centurylink.net
Sun May 5 11:15:20 CDT 2024

Don't look for reason in house sparrow behavior. The most amazing and unreasonable thing about house sparrow behavior is that the male house sparrow develops a bond with his choice of nest site, not his mate.  And this will carry to the point of him being blocked or afraid to enter a site, but still having fidelity for it.  

     In other bird species the pair will move as a unit to seek another nesting site if the nesting effort is destroyed or interrupted.  In house sparrows, the female will depart, but the male will remain, perched on or near the nest site, chirping constantly to attract another female. You can trap and remove her, or discourage her by frequent nest removal and egg destruction. But the male will remain. And sometimes be joined by associates as Susan Kennedy witnessed.

     The obvious solution is removal efforts concentrating on male house sparrows. Tools to aid in such efforts are available from Bluebird and Purple Martin advocacy organizations

Don Grussjng


On Sun, 5 May, 2024 at 8:25 AM, Susan Kennedy via Mnbird <mnbird at listsmnbird.net> wrote:

To: mnbird

I have a birdhouse designed for wrens/chickadees. In winter, I take the restrictor off the entrance so a downy can sleep in it. But that allows house sparrows to think they can use it in the spring. However, in the spring, the restrictor goes back on, and the HOSP try but can't get into the house.

The male wren has showed up, claiming this and all the nearby boxes. Then I witnessed a group of 6 male HOSP acting as wing men surrounding the wren. There was no physical confrontation, but the standoff lasted for several minutes. It was quite fascinating to see the HOSP confront the wren even though there was no way for them to claim the house.

Susan Kennedy in SW Mpls.
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