Patti Cable continued to volunteer for LLCT as a nest box monitor in 2022. She monitored 10 boxes throughout the season, starting in March. The last boxes were cleaned out and closed up in August. There are eight boxes in Chapman Pasture, one box in a small clearing near Twin Pond, and one box in a conservation field along Tower Road.
Patti observed 14 nesting attempts throughout the season, which means at least one egg was present in a nest. There were eight Eastern Bluebird nest attempts, three Tree Swallow nest attempts, and three House Sparrow nest attempts.
Patti would monitor several times a week, closely tracking when eggs were laid. She could then estimate when the eggs would hatch and when the chicks would fledge. It’s especially important for nest box monitors to keep track of this timeline, as there is a “do not open” period when the chicks are most vulnerable to falling out of the nest. Patti ensures that the box remains closed during that critical period.
Patti documented 23 Eastern Bluebird fledglings and 11 Tree Swallow fledglings. Patti noted that two boxes were particularly successful this year. One box housed a Tree Swallow family early in the season, followed by a Bluebird family. Another box hosted three sequential Bluebird nesting attempts, two of which were successful.
Of note, this year was a more successful year than last for the Tree Swallows. It is wonderful to see the glint of blue as they swoop through the field!
A warm thanks to Patti for her diligent monitoring, and to Jane Layton for her support of this effort. All photos by Patti Cable, unless otherwise noted.