I am so ticked at HOSP - they have entered the BB box and destroyed 3 of the 5 eggs. (I PUT UP THE Mylar strips as a deterant) I want to get RID of the HOSP. Can't seem to get them with my air BB rifle. Do HOSP traps really work good, and how expensive are they. I am desperate here now, AND MAD! - - The Bluebirds themselves are doing a great job fending off those HOSP. However the HOSP are very sneaky. Urrrrrrgh! NLM in SC Zn7b (UpState near Spartanburg)
Yes sir! Those Van Ert traps are a charm! I absolutely love them! They are on Van Ert traps online. I believe their cost is $3.50 per trap + s & h. I purchased three for $18. I even emailed Floyd Van Ert and told him that I'd sent my check the day before, so he went ahead and put the traps in the mail to me that next day.
I wouldn't be without them! They are small so they're not cumbersome to work with; the only time spent getting them ready is putting two small screws in the box so you can just hook the trap on, set it and walk away. They're black so they can't be seen by the target species. Spring-loaded so there is no delay when the door snaps shut, and stays shut. And they have a bright orange dot on the trap door so you can easily see when it's been tripped.
If your boxes are closed with a screw, I would advise only finger-tightening the screw after you've put the trap in and set it. Since I use a plastic trash bag to receive the bird after its been trapped, I run my hand into the bag through hand-sized hole in a bottom corner, fit the open end of the bag around the bottom-half of the nestbox, turn the screw with my fingers, grip the bag's top closed tight around the bottom half of the nestbox, then open the door with the hand that's inside the bag. The bird usually jumps out into the bag by itself once it sees daylight.
Once it's bagged, what is done with the bird --after i.d.'ing-- is one's own business. Me, the head goes one direction and the body another. I only have one sparrow left to dispatch, luckily, this year. You should be able to catch yours within minutes if they're being that obstinate about using that box. It is recommended to wait --even though it's hard to-- until the house sparrows are territorial about "that" box, and starting to build a nest in it, before trying to trap them. And that does work.
Hope that helps. Van Erts are great!
Thanks Monti - I'm going to give it a whirl - I've got way too many HOSP here now. Urgggh! NLM in SC Zn7
I also use a Van Ert trap to catch HOSP and love it. I just set the trap for tomorrow morning for another male HOSP that is claiming one of my houses. I will check it when I wake up. This is my third year having nesting Bluebirds......6 eggs hatched a week ago.
Sorry to hear about your blues eggs!
Vanerts work great for HOSP but will trap any bird that goes in the birdhouse, although it won't hard them. Do you have an extra house that you can put the vanert in because you won't be able to put it in the bluebird nestbox. Are the bluebirds still attending to the two remaining eggs? I have two nestboxes that I mounted on fenceposts so I can easily use them as trap boxes as I can move them wherever I want them.
Question on your mylar strips. Did you purchase a sparrow spooker or make your own? Does it have dowels that go out over the nestbox that the mylar hangs from? Does the mylar just barely touch the top of the nestbox, from front to back? A proper sparrow spooker "should" work at deterring HOSP.
Hey dzyg - I made my own HOSP spookers - Screwed a 1/2" dial rod over the top of post, then attached mylar strips to this w/staples. Just to move over the top of boxes. I used page pockets and cut them in strips They were milky color. It does work to deter HOSP however the HOSP got to the BB eggs before realizeed Momma BB was laying and I got this done. HOSP know just where to go. Hmmm! I'm glad there at two eggs left in the BB box, and the parents are attending them very faithfully. NLM in SC Zn7
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