Fri Mar 11, 2005 6:52 am

I have used 2 of the Vanerttraps that Don has mentioned for several years with great success. If I have a box that sparrows are persistent with I slip a trap into it and not long the orange dot is showing in the window. Slip a trash bag over the box, open door, work it back around the box and you have your bird. Then you can release, cull, etc. Another help I have found is when you put out bird food, I use only black sunflower seed and not wild bird food with millet. It won't deter all the House Sparrows (Weaver Finch) from feeding but I noticed a significant difference. When I started with my boxes 3 years ago I had a terrible problem with House Sparrows. With the above listed deterents, and a little help from "Daisy", I have had great success with my 7 boxs.

Fri Mar 11, 2005 8:27 am

I too use only black sunflower seed (50 lbs near $15 at Lowes). The sole problem is this time of year the blackbird mob is returning (Grackles, Starlings, Red Wings) and monopolize any feeding stations they can access. A good one is a wire enclosed tube feeder but of course this one also blocks out larger colorful birds such as Cardinals and Jays.

Fri Mar 11, 2005 11:49 am

Joe. Funny you should mention starlings. Saw a few under the feeders yesterday for the first time... I too, use only "black oil sunflower seeds". Get it at Tractor Supply for about $13 for 50 lbs. The birds love it. Don't have too many house sparrows around here. My blue bird houses get House & Carolina Wrens or Tree Swallows, sometimes. Last year I had a litter of flying squirrels in a box I had screwed to a tree. Almost destroyed them thinking they were mice. Good thing I saw mama jump from the tree in the day time. Figured they were hers. Week later I checked them out & they had the flappy skin starting on their sides.

Below is a new type blue bird house that's suppose to deter sparrows. Haven't tried it yet, so don't know for sure ............


Sat Mar 12, 2005 4:57 pm


Interesting design. The way it's shown in the picture, seems like it would be difficult to mount and impossible to clean and observe, but that could be remedied with a couple of design changes.

Sat Mar 12, 2005 6:22 pm

Don. I agree that the design is interesting and would be a challange to design a good stable mount. Below is a picture of the article that brought about the prior posted picture in one of last years "Birds and Blooms" magazines. As you can see, the top swivels up for cleaning. Also, you can see a litter of bluebirds. So I guess it does work. As I don't have a major problem with unwanted birds taking over the boxes, I'm not in the biggest hurry to try it...........


Sat Mar 12, 2005 7:09 pm


Here's a link to a little better set of plans for the Carrier bluebird box.

Sat Mar 12, 2005 8:51 pm

If anyone is looking for some plans to build a conventional box, here is a link. I built six of the eastern bluebird boxes last night.

Sat Mar 19, 2005 4:27 pm

Talking about birds I just went for a walk. There were robbins all over the place it just got done raining and I got 8-12 foot from them and they wouldn't eaven move. I counted over 25 before I gave up must be 35 to 50 of them out there.

Sat May 28, 2005 10:55 am

The Blue Birds here on the front lawn are feeding their young ................. :)