I sincerely hope all of my readers enjoyed a safe and happy 4th of July. Independence Day!!! How we love our freedom and the day to celebrate it.  We were able to go camping and watch the Catfish Place fireworks.  Needless to say it was very warm and humid. The barometric pressure was even hovering under 30 most of the weekend. Not my kind of weather, but hey its July, and the corn is growing. 

I have had a sad week on the Bluebird Trails. I lost two nests of baby blues. I have done some asking and also researched the reasons of losing a healthy looking nest of babies. One problem is insects, gnats for one.  The Purple Martin and Bluebirds all across the country have been affected by the gnats and chiggers and so forth.  The gnats literally suck the blood from them and make them lethargic and soon to die.  That is how I found them.  I also had some concerns about the heat.

Another reason I found on my Purple Martin Facebook Page was Roundup. Everyone was asking me if Roundup had been sprayed near the houses. Of course, many things have been sprayed recently with the soybeans close by.  So there are many reasons, I feel it could have been the heat, along with gnats. I have not been able to check my Purple Martin house and I am wondering about them.

Now that I have lost them, I went back and looked at the pictures that I had taken of them, and noticed that they actually looked lethargic. On the good side, in the house that I had the white eggs, there is a new nest. I found at least two other houses with new nests in them as well. I have one house with two healthy babies in it, and one house with five good eggs. I have not lost all hope yet.

It is July and this will be their third clutch. I am excited to be able to watch yet another two-three weeks of progress. By the end of July, the Purple Martins will be starting to head on their southern journey. I also have two nests of Tree Swallows on the trail near the road.  They look extremely healthy. I guess bluebirds are a delicate creature. 

This has been a busy summer, and doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon. If you have not liked my Pine Ridge Bluebird Facebook Page, please do. I post lots of pictures of my babies and just nature pictures. I truly enjoy the wildflowers, and the birds on the trails.  I have lots of Hummingbirds and one set of baby Wrens have flown, with another two houses here in the yard yet to go.  They sing to me every day.  I hope you are enjoying your summer. Until next time, good bird watching.