House Hunting: What a Bluebird Looks For in a Home (page 3)
So what are the elements of a bluebird's habitat? I determined that the most important elements are open fields and water. I found this by first, monitoring a bluebird trail with more than 45 bluebird boxes. I collected the data for one season, and used the data monitored from the season before. Next, I went back to the bluebird boxes to measure the height, the direction the box was facing, the distance from a field, a forest, a body of water, a tree, power lines, and a road. After collecting all of this data, I found the totals of the two years of data collected. Then, I sorted all of my data on a spreadsheet. Next, I found the mean and median of each spreadsheet. I graphed all of my data using a scatter plot graph. The "Y" axis was always the total of bluebirds found in each bluebird box. The "X" axis was always the variable or measurement.
The only two variables I found that are the elements of a bluebird's habitat are a body of water, and open fields. The bluebirds tended to live near these elements of a habitat. The bluebird boxes with bluebirds in them were, at an average, 1449 feet away from a body of water. The boxes without bluebirds in the boxes were on average, 1820 feet away from bluebird boxes. This measurement shows that bluebirds chose boxes closer to water. There were no other data indicators for this variable. For the open field, the boxes with bluebirds in them averaged 18 feet away from a field. The boxes without bluebirds in them averaged 73 feet away from a field. That shows that the bluebirds live closer to a field. The other data indicators were the median distance from a field, graph pattern, and correlation.
If I were to do this study again, I would compare two locations. That is, take my data from this project and compare it to another type of landform (other than a large island on the Chesapeake Bay). I would also compare my findings with different species of birds because I found many tree swallows in the bluebird boxes. But other than that, I would keep everything the same, the measurements, procedure, and so on. So in conclusion,my findings show that the essential elements of a bluebird's habitat are water and open fields.
The Birder's Handbook, by Paul R. Ehrbich, David S. Dobkin, Darryl Wheye, page 452
The Book of North American Birds, by the editors of Readers Digest, page 116
An Instant Guide to Birds, by Mike Lambert and Alan Pearson, page 67
The Backyard Bird Lover's Guide, by Jan Mahnken, page 222 and 292
Bringing Back the Bluebirds Handbook, by Andrew M. Troyer
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