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Mountain Bluebird  

Order: Passeriformes
Family: Turdidae
Genus: Sialia
Species: currucoides

La. passer  sparrow, small bird
La. forma  form, kind,
La. turdus  a thrush
Gr. sialis  a kind of bird
La. curruca  a bird in writings by  Juvenal

Mountain Bluebird, Allan Brooks, Birds of Western Canada, P.A. Taverner, 1926
Allan Brooks
About six or seven inches long. Blue head, neck, back, rump and tail (lighter blue than the other bluebirds.) Grayish white underside. Black bill and eyes.

Inhabits the Rocky Mountains and higher elevated plains throughout most of western North America from southern Alaska, the Yukon, above Alberta in the Northwest Territories around the Great Slave Lake area, as far east as Manitoba, south to northern Mexico, overlapping both the Western and Eastern Bluebird ranges. Migrates to the U.S. and Mexico.

USGS Mountain Bluebird Map

Builds nests of grass and the shredded inner bark of cedar trees in natural or abandoned tree and post hollows, cliff crevices, abandoned mines, barns, cabins, odd building nooks and crannies, and birdhouses

Lays three to seven greenish blue eggs which hatch after about two weeks incubation and young leave the nest in about another three weeks.

Forages for insects near or on the ground.

Baby Bluebirds, A. R. Dugmore

A.R. Dugmore

Bluebird trails have become very popular including in the far northern reaches of its range.

The Mountain Bluebird Mountain Bluebird House (same as for Western Bluebird) has a 5" by 5" floor, 9" inside ceiling, 1 9/16" diameter entrance hole located 7" above the floor and ventilation openings. Hinged roof is secured with shutter hooks.

English sparrows, tree swallows, violet green swallows, chickadees, titmice, wrens, nuthatches and downy woodpeckers may use this box.

Nestbox Plans for Western and Mountain Bluebirds
Western & Mountain Bluebird Nest Box Plans


Mount bluebird houses 3� - 6� high on a post in woodland clearings, shelter belt edges bordering fields, among scattered trees, or pasture fence lines. Make a "bluebird trail" of several houses about 100 yards apart; further in wide open expanses and closer in clearings of wooded areas.

On fence lines mount houses on the sides of posts facing the next post. The recessed position helps avoid cattle or other large animals that like to rub against them. Monitor the boxes for unwanted squatters. Deter predators with steel posts or sheet metal wrapped around wood posts. Avoid shade, but also avoid direct sunlight through the entrance if possible.

Tree Swallows and Violet Green Swallows make good neighbors and will help defend against sparrows. See their birdhouse plans below.


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