Tag Archives: bird nesting

Nesting a Robin’s Perogative

This photo was taken about in early May 2009, in my mother’s backyard.

Apparently, every year for the last 20+ years, a robin’s nest has been built in this very same spot. Of course, it’s not the same robin every year (Robins are not able to be octomoms). According to a zoology archive from the US Department of Energy, very few robins survive their first year. For those that survive, a life span of about 5 to 6 years is the norm.

So, back to this particular robin in her nest. I’ve been following this bird, and her family, with my camera and video phone for the last 2 weeks. I’ll update the blog later with photos of feeding, the daddy and such, but for now I wanted to focus on the momma and nesting habits of the robin. Personally, I think she looks a little cramped and uncomfortable in that nest. But she seems to be content.

Most robins place their nest in a crook of tree or a shrub about 5 to 20 feet above the ground. What makes this particular robins nest interesting is that it is always built at the intersection of the gutters along the top of the garage. It does seem to be the perfect little hideaway, and usually is, until nosy people such as myself hang out all day and try to get the perfect photo of a robin’s nesting habits. Then, it gets a little ridiculous while the robin and the person (me) have a battle of wills. The daddy will come hopping along, squawk at her, look at me, and take off. Then I have to leave to give them a chance to bond as a family and let them feed their babies.
But, I have a secret window spot too. So I’ve had the chance to see it all in action. Quite amazing.

In any case, another interesting facts about robins is that they can produce three successful broods in one year. On average, though, only 40 percent of nests successfully produce young. And, only 24% of those young will survive to November. So, in order to help robins thrive, it is suggested that a person can try to place fruit on tray feeders or plant fruiting shrubs to attract more of them to your backyard garden.

One great tray feeder is the Droll Yankee Seed Tray. This clear plastic tray measures 7.5″ and will fit all Droll Yankee tube feeders and many other brands. The Droll Yankee Seed Tray easily attaches with a threaded plug and is constructed of clear durable plastic.

What’s even better is that even if you don’t have trees, feeding the birds with the Droll Yankee Seed Tray will be no problem. The ultimate yard system comes with a 68 garden pole and pole adapter for mounting feeder on top. Also included are three 24 pole sections, a triple pole hook assembly, pole adapter, and ultimate pole auger.

So, for now, we’ll let this robin rest. More updates will be available as we follow this beautiful bird and her brood.

Choosing a Nest Box to Attract Birds to Your Yard

When selecting a bird house for your yard, it is important to keep in mind the type of bird you would like to attract. Bird houses come in all shapes and sizes, but birds are not picky about the outward appearance. Keep in mind the size of the house, the size of the entrance hole, and the height of the box above ground when purchasing a house, since these features are most important to birds.

One type of bird house that is ideal for attracting birds to your yard is the nest box. Nest boxes make are great for attracting a variety of birds including bluebirds, wrens, chickadees, finches and more. They are made of wood, easy to place in multiples and can be customized for your yard.

An ideal nest box for attracting bluebirds is the Bluebird Nest Box by Droll Yankees. This pine box has features that any bluebird would love. The roof is made to be extra large and has a large overhang to protect birds and eggs inside from the elements. The entry hole is designed to look like a natural cavity hole for attracting bluebirds. In addition, the box is vented on the sides for improved air flow. The box also has a side door for easy access for cleaning. To give the box a more natural look, it may be painted or stained to blend in with your outdoor surroundings. The more natural looking boxes tend to attract more bluebirds because they are naturally attracted to cavities.

Another great next box for your yard is the Cedar Wren and Chickadee house by Audubon. This sturdy, wooden box is made of cedar wood that is high in natural resins to keep it looking great for years. The roof has an overhang to help protect the birds and eggs inside. To attract wrens, place a few of the boxes in secluded locations in your yard away from direct sunlight.

Remember that it may take a little to attract birds to your yard and placement of the nest boxes is critical. Birds like homes that are secluded and replicate a natural cavity. It is a good idea to place several types of next boxes in your yard, so your birds have a variety of homes to choose from. Place boxes about 30 feet from each other.

You can find a large variety of great nest boxes and bird homes at Rachel’s Robin.