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Bluebird Housing Milestone

September 4, 2021

Article author Ian Kimbrey

(Photo: Barbara Weaver)

I am happy to report that we just passed ONE THOUSAND bluebirds raised in CheepCheep Homes nest boxes since my project began with one nest at Penmar Golf Course in 2009. The “trail” now runs from Long Beach in the south, all the way north to Sacramento, through L.A., Santa Barbara, Santa Maria, Lompoc and Big Sur.

(Photo: Kathleen Waldron)

Happily, COVID did not appear to adversely affect the bluebirds. Conversely, they appear to have enjoyed having Penmar and Rancho golf courses to themselves for much of the nesting season as numbers were up at both places. Special congrats to “senior” monitor (and SMBAS member) Edie Gralla, who pushed us over the line with her fourth brood this year at Rancho Park golf course. Edie fledged 28 chicks from five boxes at Rancho, up from 27 last year.

(Photo: IKONIK)

My nest box design – I call it the “chick magnet” – has proven to be irresistible to multiple winged species. Two nest boxes also hosted colonies of bees this year, until they were safely rehoused – luckily I know a bee guy – namely me. After the bees had gone, bluebirds moved back into both boxes and raised broods.

This project continues to connect us with new friends – like photographers Kathleen Waldron and Barbara Weaver who enrich the project with their SPECTACULAR photos and videos.

(Photo: Barbara Weaver)

Anyone wishing to purchase a nest box and/or start/monitor a trail, please email Ian at

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