The Daily Bucket–Let all the Little Creatures Come Forth

Multiple robins have occupied my yard for months now.  Somehow their presence seemed to make the Spring come a few days sooner.

I cannot tell the boys from the girls.  I thought the female were supposed to be drab,  but they all look alike to me.  They seemed more like a collective than paired off couples.

At first it seemed like several robins participated in building a nest in my arbor vitae tree. They attacked the squirrels and other birds. (See www.dailykos.com/…)

They flew into the arbor vitae’s canopy with beaks full of nest materials and worms, sometimes every minute.   I dug up a wormy compost pit for them.  I thought I even saw a nest, with movement.  Then activity ceased at the arbor vitae for weeks now.

But the half dozen robins were still hanging around.   So I followed the old rule that robins will nest in the most inconvenient place possible.

This lead me to check out the nicest spot to sit in the entire yard, a padded bench, elevated, under an arch, shaded by grape vines, looking over the peonies and artichokes, past the pear tree, to the far pond.



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The Robin’s nest is top center, where the chimes are now.

Of course by now the bench was covered in robin poop and nesting materials.  And there she  was … And she’s up above the yard …

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Premier seating, now occupied by robins.

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Hmm, may want to move those cushions.

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She wrapped her nest tight around the bench’s open roof beam, and wedged it into a thicket of grape vines.  She’ll bump against grapes whatever direction she moves.

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She spent a lot of time in the shallow creek in the Frog Mitigation Area, dipping and soaking leaves until they were just the right stickiness for nest walls.  Then she only had a 30 foot flight to her nest construction site.

The Mitigation Area, built for tadpoles, has become the birds’ go-to area for water and nesting materials.  It mimics a small forested wetland.  This means I should leave pear tree leaves in the creek, too.

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The grapes swiftly vined around the nest.  She has peepholes for herself to track the world. She has a secret exit, back over the roof behind the nest.  I’ve seen her sneak away to the Mitigation Area to sip water.

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Hey, are the in-laws moving in, too?  You say he’s your brother?

I dunno where this juvie robin fledged,  but they are hanging around now. They can come over from the golf course, half a league to the east.

 In theory this one could have hatched from this year’s first brood. Robins can nest in early April and raise two broods of 4 eggs, consecutively.  Incubation and nesting periods are each two weeks long.  The male would tend to the fledglings while the female sat on the second batch of eggs.

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And whenever I go outside, a robin watches. I’m sure the crows watch too.

Thanks to everyone who Bucketed and commented on birds nesting  this Spring, your experiences were a good guide for me and Myra.

Thanks for reading The Daily Bucket,

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Now it’s your turn!  What have you noted in your area or travels? Any pretty bugs  in your yard? Please post your observations and general location in your comments. I’ll check back later.

/s/ Redwoodman