About us: We own the Wild Birds Unlimited nature shop in East Lansing, Michigan,
a store that provides a wide variety of supplies to help you enjoy the birdwatching hobby.

This blog was created to answer frequently asked questions & to share nature stories and photographs.
To contribute, email me at bloubird@gmail.com.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Found a bird's nest while pruning

from Wikimedia Commons
What do you do if you find a doves nest while trimming a bush?

I think it is best if you leave them alone and let nature take its course. Doves, like a lot of birds, rely on camouflage to protect them from predators’ attacks. Sometimes they remain still until danger passes or they may leave the nest as danger approaches, to lure the predator away. Make sure to keep any cats indoors and don't place a bird feeder near the nest site.

Once the the chicks have hatched they are fed by the female in the nest for two weeks. The young continue to stay near the nest and beg for food after they have fledged, but can survive on their own after 21 days old if there is food nearby.

The best time to trim your trees and bushes is after nesting season between November and February. Trimming during the winter months is the best way to ensure that you won’t be destroying bird nests or taking away much needed shelter for native and migratory birds.

If you can't wait to trim:
1. Inspect the ground around the plant for white-gray dropping from nesting birds. If there is a high concentration of droppings in one or two specific locations, then it’s highly likely that birds are nesting above.

2. Look for birds flying into and out of vegetation and scolding you. This type of behavior is typical of birds defending a nest from would-be predators.

3. Watch for birds carrying nest-building materials (sticks, leaves, debris, etc.) or food recurrently to the same location.

Remember that if a bird nest is found in a tree or bush it is illegal to begin/continue to trim that vegetation. Native and migratory birds and their nests are protected under a set of laws known as the Migratory Bird Treaty Act (MBTA), which includes relocating their nests.

If you find a baby bird that may be in need of help, then you can call a licensed rehabilitator for advice: http://baby-bird-fell-out-of-nest-now-what.html

Related Articles:
Gardening for birds http://bit.ly/z095kL
Attract More Goldfinches to the garden: http://bit.ly/wNj67F
Flowers that attract hummingbirds: http://bit.ly/wkhlJn
A Closer look at Dandelions http://bit.ly/zkq0yL
The Chemical-Free Lawn is Bird Friendly http://chemical-free-lawn.html

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