Bluebird Update 4.11.17

Another week of nesting season has gone by, some things remain the same, others have changed. We currently have 24 eggs, all being incubated, and three hatchlings in our six nest boxes. If you remember, there were 24 eggs in the nests last week. Three of those eggs have hatched. So how can we still have 24 eggs?

Read on to find out.

The Cow Pasture nest held 2 eggs on Tuesday last (4/4). There are now 5 eggs in that nest and the adults are sitting on those eggs.

Cow pasture nest with 5 eggs (4/11/17).

The chickadee nest box on the service road in Explore the Wild, as it did last week, contains 6 eggs. They too, are being incubated.

Explore the Wild nest with 6 eggs (4/11/17).

Three of the 5 chickadee eggs in the box next to the old Bungee Jump site have hatched. The hatchlings were quite naked and fragile when I peered into the nest box. I snapped a quick photo and closed the door. Hopefully the other two eggs will hatch today, if they hadn’t already.

Three very fragile chickadee nestlings at the Bungee nest (4/11/17).

One of the adult chickadees sat tight as I approached the nest box at the service road to Into the Mist. Last week at this time there were four eggs in the nest. I didn’t want to flush her to see if she increased the brood size, so I’m going to assume the egg count is the same. Another quick photo, and I was out of there.

Chickadee sits tight on eggs as I peek into her nest at Into the Mist (4/11/17).

On to the Woodlands nest box. There were 4 unattended eggs in this nest last week. The eggs were covered by fur making them difficult to count. There’s now a nice, round cup formed around the eggs and they are clearly visible, a good indication that incubation is in progress.

Incubation is underway at the chickadee nest at the Woodlands (4/11/17).

And finally, the Butterfly House nest. As in the past two nest box inspections, there are 3 bluebird eggs in the nest. A female flew out of the nest box as I approached. She was incubating. This bluebird has decorated her nest with a brightly colored feather (see photo).

Note the green feather at the Butterly House nest (4/11/17).

So, at the conclusion of the fourth nest box inspection of the season, I have 24 eggs and 3 hatchlings to report. Eight eggs belong to bluebirds and 16 to chickadees. I suspect that the remaining two eggs in the chickadee nest at the old Bungee Jump have hatched by the time of this posting (4/12). But, as is always the case, we’ll have to wait till next week to see for sure.

’Til then, enjoy!

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