Monday, 25 November 2013

Birds Nesting in the Garden

There are all sorts of signs that birds are nesting in our garden. A month or so ago, I saw sparrows flying around with bits of grass in their beaks looking for a good nest site. I don't know where they've nested. The blackbirds must have found somewhere to nest too, as I've already seen a youngster hopping around behind its parents begging for food. This is quite a sight, as the young blackbird is as big as its parents, but can't yet feed itself.

It's much harder to spot the nests. But if you look carefully, sometimes you can find them. Often a sign you're close to a nest is the alarmed noise from the parents, who might also fly away out of the tree. They do this because they think you are a possible predator and want to distract you from looking in the tree.

A tui nest in the garden

I found this tui nest in the garden. The female tui builds a nest out of sticks in the fork of a tree. She keeps the nest clean by removing the baby bird's droppings. So another sign of a nest above might be a lots of white bird droppings in one place under a tree. I'm leaving the tui in peace to bring up her chicks and looking forward to seeing the chicks when they leave the nest.

It is easier to find a nest in winter, when storms might reveal old nests. I found this one by a pathway, it must have blown out of a tree. I'm not sure what bird this nest belonged to. Perhaps a sparrow?