July 21, 2009

Bluebirds returning to parts of Florida

The once endangered Eastern bluebird is making a comeback of sorts in parts of Florida with nearly 100 birds nesting east of Tampa, bird watchers said.

A solar-powered video camera in a nesting box gives visitors a close look at a bluebird family at Flatwoods Park, a Hillsborough County-owned wilderness preserve cared for by the Tampa Audubon Society, The Tampa (Fla.) Tribune reported Tuesday.

From a television monitor at the ranger's station, visitors can watch the adults build a nest and tend to bluebird chicks as they feed, grow and fly away, all in about five to six weeks time, Audubon spokeswoman Mary Miller told the Tribune.

The Eastern bluebird, which nests from March through August, primarily makes its home in Texas and throughout the U.S. Southeast.

The bird's resurgence in parts of Florida has been aided by Audubon volunteers who track the population and build nesting boxes for them, the Tribune reported.