Monday, July 18, 2011

Something cute

Robins have built a nest in the clematis twining up the little trellis on our fromt porch!

For some weeks I'd noticed that whenever I walked out the front door or up the front step, a bird would fly out of the clematis and into the pine tree standing in the front yard. I thought it was a bit odd that a bird would be so fond of perching on the trellis - it had never happened before - but it wasn't until yesterday that I put 2 and 2 together and wondered if there mightn't be a NEST in there. I just didn't think that the clematis could be strong enough to support a nest, but I haven't cut it back very far for the last 2 years, so there are a lot of dry vines behind the leaves and flowers, and I guess that, what with the wooden trellis behind, it's enough to support the weight of a little nest.

After watching a lot of to and fro action from the robin, I sneaked up to where the bird usually hung out, which is just at about eye level, and spotted a very well-concealed nest. Not only that, but I could see a tiny chick in there! It must have just come out of the egg, because it was lying on its back with its eyes closed. After a few hours, I could tell that there were THREE baby robins in the nest! I can see the edge of the nest from the living room window, and from time to time I could see their little heads moving around, usually with their beaks wide open for food! The two parent birds are now carrying on a continual relay of bringing food to the nest; one robin spent over 5 minutes breaking a large earthworm into little pieces to carry back.

Once the babies were 2 days old, I think they'd figured out a few things: mostly that food only comes when a parent bird arrives. So it's useless to wave their mouths around looking for something to eat when there's no adult bird - now they go to sleep in between food supplies. But when a parent arrives, they start bouncing around and waving their beaks in the air - I can see their downy little heads bobbing over the edge of the nest.

I took the above picture the day before yesterday; the birds are already a fair bit bigger now. Their nest is at about eye level, but I try not to poke my nose in there too often, and only when the parents are away. Actually, now I can't even sit out on the front porch, because after 5 minutes, I'm confronted with a robin with his beak stuffed with goodies, who just stares at me until I leave. They won't go into the nest while they think someone is watching, and I don't want the little birds to have to wait for their food, so I just try to peek at them through the front window. The parents are pretty canny, though; they're always watching and they spot my even when I'm inside.


Blogger Priscilla said...

Normally I don't "do" cute, but I have a soft spot for robins and their nests - especially after the experience I had in Montana. I'm sending a link to the post where I wrote about the robins there.

Good luck with your nest.

10:22 am  

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