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Help Brown-Headed Nuthatches - Place a Nestbox Today!

brown-headed nuthatch ©Ken Thomas
The North Carolina Audubon Bird-Friendly Communities Program
has an audacious goal to deploy 10,000 brown-headed nuthatch boxes by the end of 2015! The brown-headed nuthatch is a small bird - just under 4" long - and sounds just like a rubber ducky squeaky toy. A quintessential Southern bird, with a home range from Virginia to east Texas, the nuthatch lives in old-growth pine or just about anywhere it can get its most important food - pine seeds. 

Audubon, Partners in Flight, and the NC Wildlife Resources Commission consider the brown-headed nuthatch a responsibility species for North Carolina. No big surprise, but humans had a hand in their decline of 2.2% a year from 1966 to 1996. More recent data are encouraging - nuthatches increased 1% a year from 2001 to 2011 - and humans can keep nuthatches headed in the right direction.

There are two easy ways to provide a cozy little home for the nuthatch. First, any nest box design approved by the North American Bluebird Society will work very well for brown-headed nuthatches but it is important to make the opening smaller - ideally 1" in diameter. Placing a nestbox is the best way to help keep the trend for nuthatches increasing. Check here for more detailed information on building your own, or purchase a box from one of these retailers.

But the fun doesn't end once you've installed your nestbox! Register with the NC Audubon Society for updates, and report your observations so they can track the success of this diminutive nuthatch in our state.

Wanna see a brown-headed nuthach near you? Check out your nearby Birding Trail sites.

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