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Old 04-22-2012, 05:28 PM   #41
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That will be interesting fishlkmich. Keep us posted.

My five bluebirds still haven't fledged, the urine/fecal smell is pretty stong. Hey, those kids need to go Momma! It's pretty cold here for this time of year, maybe they just don't want to leave a cozy nest.

On the other hand seven chickadee babies hatched and are the cutest little wee things you've ever seen! I love being a surrogate bird Mom!

The wren eggs are still unhatched, they may have either been abandoned or the mom was killed. We have an orange cat that roams, she's on my list to trap. The owner could care less.
Be glad that you don't have house finches. They never take out a fecal sac. The nice nest turns into a big pile of poop!

That's a good point to make. As soon as those bluebird chicks fledge, clean out the nest box, right away. It gets rid of any parasites and nest building is a big part of the pairing/nesting ritual. It increases the chance of the pair returning and rebuilding another nest and having another successful brood.

Nest checks on chickadees are impossible! I don't even count tree swallows anymore! Close is good.

Don't give up on a nest to quickly. Do you know when the last egg was laid and how long the incubation period is? She can put off incubation for a while and fool you.
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Old 04-22-2012, 07:36 PM   #42
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Nest checks on chickadees are impossible! I don't even count tree swallows anymore! Close is good.
I've only been focusing on checking the bluebirds in the past few years, but I have a pair of chickadees building a nest in one of the bluebird boxes. I'd like to check in on them...why is it impossible--they won't let you near the nest?
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Old 04-22-2012, 08:19 PM   #43
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I've only been focusing on checking the bluebirds in the past few years, but I have a pair of chickadees building a nest in one of the bluebird boxes. I'd like to check in on them...why is it impossible--they won't let you near the nest?
Chickadees don't care about anything unless you take their food away! Those things lay a big pile of little eggs and those are hard enough to count. Trying to figure out how many eggs they lay and how many hatch and how many make it to fledge is not impossible, but it's too much of a chore for me!

They are the perfect training species. It is hard to do, so you have to pay attention to detail. The adults will just sit on a branch and wait for you to get done. The young seem to have the strongest defense of not moving, of all of the cavity nesting birds that I have worked with. When you have eight, or nine, or ten little things, they are still hard to count!

I whistled and knocked on my bluebird box before I opened it last week. She just looked at me. I explained that the lawn needed mowing and she didn't object. They get to know you.
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Old 04-23-2012, 08:42 AM   #44
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I was lucky and just happened to find the chickadee mom away from the nest so I could count the eggs. Next time I checked they had hatched and it is much more difficult to count them. They did respond to me by opening their mouths for food, their eyes were still closed. Bluebirds do that at first, then when they are older they stay very still when you check on them. They are fewer and larger of course than chickadees so it is easier to count them after they have hatched.

I will wait on the carolina wren eggs, those eggs were laid by at the latest April 4th which puts them at 18 days, usually they take 12-16 days to hatch. I'll keep watching though hoping for the best. It's been chilly lately so I'm concerned about that too.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:04 PM   #45
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Thanks for the detailed explanation, fishlkmich. Based on their bold, friendly behavior at the feeders, I'd hardly have expected them to be difficult or viscious when nesting.

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Chickadees don't care about anything unless you take their food away! Those things lay a big pile of little eggs and those are hard enough to count. Trying to figure out how many eggs they lay and how many hatch and how many make it to fledge is not impossible, but it's too much of a chore for me!

I had no idea that they laid so many eggs. I'll probably just check in and take some pictures. I don't need a big chore either.

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I whistled and knocked on my bluebird box before I opened it last week. She just looked at me. I explained that the lawn needed mowing and she didn't object. They get to know you.
I do almost the same thing. I normally make noise coming up to the box, scratch at the front, then open it up. I did that a couple of weeks ago, and I was shocked to see that she was sitting there looking at me. I got startled and so did she...she flew off. After that I added the whistle, and if she is in there, she leaves before I get too close.

It would be cool if the pair get used to me even more in the future.
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Old 04-23-2012, 07:11 PM   #46
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I put some moss out for the chickadees that are still building their nest. I can't be sure if they took it or it blew away, but it was gone when I went back...so I put more out. I'll have to check the nest inside again once it warms up again. (Then again, if there are no eggs in there, I guess it doesn't matter if it is cold, does it? )

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They did respond to me by opening their mouths for food, their eyes were still closed. Bluebirds do that at first, then when they are older they stay very still when you check on them.
I've seen them do that for me as well...and then learn to sit motionless.

I'm so thrilled to be able to witness this first hand over the past three years.
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Old 04-25-2012, 12:14 PM   #47
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The bluebirds fledged today. One egg didn't hatch. The other four made it. I've seen them out with their parents this morning. I cleaned out the nest box in good shape and left the door open a few hours to air. I saw mom on the wire right above the box so she may be interesting in making a new nest soon.

The chickadees are getting fuzzier, they still have their eyes closed. Cute but scrawny little buggers! All seven have hatched. I hope mom can keep up with them!

Wow, they're hungry!
Bluebirds nesting 2012-chickadee-nest.jpg

Awww darn, false alarm, go back to sleep!
Bluebirds nesting 2012-chickadee-chicks.jpg
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Old 04-25-2012, 01:10 PM   #48
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Ha ha ha.... they heard you and opened their mouths!!! Grrrrrrrreat photos!!!
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Old 04-26-2012, 11:48 AM   #49
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Nothing using the bluebird house I had set up.
Moss starting to go into the tiny box the wren had used two years ago.
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Old 04-26-2012, 08:11 PM   #50
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Originally Posted by linrose View Post
The bluebirds fledged today. One egg didn't hatch. The other four made it. I've seen them out with their parents this morning. I cleaned out the nest box in good shape and left the door open a few hours to air. I saw mom on the wire right above the box so she may be interesting in making a new nest soon.
Congratulations on the four newest members of your yard! Lucky you get to see them out with their parents.

It was too cool today for me to open the box (has been for a few days), but I'm wondering if my pair's eggs hatched--you are obviously quite a bit ahead of me here in PA.

I hope you can report a second brood before too long.

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The chickadees are getting fuzzier, they still have their eyes closed. Cute but scrawny little buggers! All seven have hatched. I hope mom can keep up with them!
Last time I checked, my chickadees had built up their nest a bit, but still no eggs.

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Wow, they're hungry!



Awww darn, false alarm, go back to sleep!
LOL! Cute.
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2012, baby birds, bird, bird eggs, bird house, bird nest, birds, blue, blue bird, bluebird house, bluebird nest, bluebirds, brood, chickadee, eggs, hatch, hatchlings, house, nest, nesting, nesting birds, nests, wren

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