Housecleaning is for the Birds

| 10/27/2015 9:34:00 AM

Connie MooreBack in June we were busy watching the new neighbors moving in. As my column of June 10 stated, “while no moving vans appeared, homes were put together with all manner of materials, from the finest available goods.”

Now as November comes into its third week, we have been left the task of housecleaning for those neighbors who decided to abandon house and home for warmer regions. It’s the same every year. We’re used to it. But each year holds its own surprise as to what we actually find in our bird houses.

As a last-ditch attempt to nest, one robin built her home in the large bird feeder itself. Easy enough to clear away, we are always awed at the tight-woven, mud-glued bowl that female robins put together over a few days’ time.

robin nest on swing

On the other hand, Carolina wrens stuff their chosen box with sticks until not even they can enter. When finished, this damp haven attracts spiders and earwigs. It is the scariest of the boxes to open and we stand at the ready to run as masses of these creatures pour out the door upon finding themselves served with eviction notice.

brown box with sticks

10/27/2015 4:03:46 PM

What a cool idea, I never thought about dissecting old bird nests to see what the birds used for building materials. I'll pay more attention the next time I find a nest on one of my woodland walkabouts.