Letters from a Hill Farm
An avian igloo!
We've had robins re-using a nest for about 5 years or so, raising 2 broods per year. (Although one of those broods a few years ago was taken out by a hawk.)At our lake cottage, the resident phoebes also re-used their nest under the porch eaves until we had the house re-painted and the painters pulled it down. Every year I pray they will rebuild in the same spot, my chair was the perfect viewing spot.
Ohhhhh, I never thought of that. I found an exquisite little one the other day and put it away to do something with it later in the spring. Maybe I better put it back????
Seasonal rentals. So what's wrong with that? :)- Jeff
It won't be long and there will be new nests to see. The Red-winged blackbirds were in the county this week. I even saw some females in the county south of here. It really won't be long.
I have one in the marsh that I am watching. I have fall photos and winter, and hope to catch the same nest in spring and summer. Like you, I am curious about whether the same nests are "recycled." I can't wait for your report on the activity in "your nest." :D
Looks a bit chilly! I have an idea they always throw out the old material in a nest box and start anew, so I doubt they would use an actual old nest. Sadly there's no sign of anyone moving into our box, after last year's successful raising of about 10 bluetits. We have one of those boxes with a camera and watched the whole shebang from egg laying to flitting. It was marvellous.
I believe some do and some don't...it'll be nice to watch in Spring and see if the home builder is a "there's my lovely nest all ready for me" or a "I simply must have a new nest" kind of girl!
Brilliant, Pamela! Margaret, thank you for the information. I'm sure I've seen birds use the wooden birdhouses we have around but I didn't know about 'homemade' nests. I'll be looking this nesting season. Hope your phoebes come back. We have them in the barn; such a sweet bird.Staci, don't worry, they'll make another one in the blink of an eye!Jeff, as I said to Pamela, brilliant!Lisa, our redwings should be back the end of this month, along with the robins. Ah, heaven. Though the winter birds are so very dear. Those finches sing the sweetest little song.Aisling, I really want to be more of an outdoors observer. It feels like I'm inside too much. But maybe it's just that it is March and I'm getting just a touch of the old cabin fever. :<)Nicola, as I told Margaret, the birds come back to our wooden houses, but I haven't paid attention to see if they ever reuse a nest. I suspect you're right. I would think they'd get fresh material each year. Aren't you lucky to have the camera! What a wonderful experience!Val, I love it! And I wonder which birds use an old one and which don't.
From time to time I have used my garden clippers to free what appears to be an abandoned nest and bring it inside branch and all. I hope I haven't unhoused a bird family by doing that.Two years ago in our WY home a gold finch built a tiny and lovely nest in an old lilac bush. Although I kept watch in the spring of 2009 I didn't see any activity around that nest.
From the sunny, consider this: A friend once told me that she sometimes takes lint from the dryer and places it here and there on the shrubbery for the birds to pick up and use in their nest building. A couple of years ago I saw a pair of Carolina wrens build a nest in a big pot of angel-wing begonia on my patio (they like to nest low to the ground). It was fun watching the eggs, the hatching, and see them fly away. The following year I planted the same pot, same plant, same location, but alas I was not so lucky the second time around.
Morning's Minion, and My Two Cents Worth, thanks for your bird stories. I am all the more interested in paying attention to the nests to see if they get used this year. The only thing is that once the leaves come out, I can't see the ones that are high up in the tree. As far as nesting material, I've seen them pick up the dog hair left from brushing, and also the sheep fleece.
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