May 29, 2017 at 8:42 am #4497
Well, today was day 14 for my eggs and I noticed a difference in papa & mama when I got up. I waited until I saw both of them out again and then looked in box. Five new “not pretty” baby blues and part of an egg shell, which makes me think they were just born this morning. Also saw a wren try to get in the house and parents pounced on it very quickly. That made me very nervous. Do have a wren guard on the box – sure hope the thing doesn’t come back, although I hear it a lot.May 29, 2017 at 9:05 am #4498nhhawk6Participant
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Congratulations, Carol! Hope the wrens go away!
Bedford, New HampshireMay 29, 2017 at 2:36 pm #4503SassyParticipant
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That is great news Carol, Mama and Papa will be busy now. I do hope that Wren is gone for good. They are beautiful little song birds but I never knew they were so vicious. I have been learning a lot since I stated with the first BB’s last year.
Connie (PA)June 7, 2017 at 6:08 pm #4658
Update – today my babies are 9 days old and I removed the wren guard as we are going to be gone for a few days and didn’t want to forget about it before fledging. I wanted to get a last look at them – and BOY – they are so down deep in the shallow “cup” that I absolutely cannot see anything but a glob – tried a small flashlight but it wouldn’t work. Fairly sure they all are alive because I don’t smell anything bad and the parents are both feeding them very good. I just watched the “worm train” as 1st papa blue would bring worms while mama was gathering and then she would bring in her contribution, and on & on. Love watching this.
P.S. Has anyone had trouble with this shallow cup thing – will it do the babies any harm not having a “soft nest” to grow up in? Even taking off the top completely (it is a top opener) I could not see anything and neither could DH. Just some dark beaks is about all you tell.June 7, 2017 at 10:07 pm #4659LisaParticipant
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My last nest had 11 pieces of pine straw! Yes, it’s time to remove the wren guard. You should be in the clear after 7 days! Best of luck!June 12, 2017 at 11:55 am #4727
They are fine now with the “shallow cup thing”. A cup is really to keep the eggs together for incubation and the chicks together when they are small for brooding and to share their body heat with each other for the first few days. As long as they can reach the opening by climbing they are good to go–so to speak.
Atlanta, GAJune 12, 2017 at 6:43 pm #4741
Yeah, Gin, that was what I was particularly worried about – them reaching the hole for fledging. My box is cedar with the rough finish on the inside, as instructed, to have more grip. But that is really going to be a stretch. I have measured and from the wood floor to the bottom of the hole is about 6.5″, or about 7.75 to middle of hole. There are 2 screws inside the front of box for the VanErt trap, so that may help with footing. Do you think this is doable for them? I would sure hate to lose this batch, since my first nesting of 5 all died. Any other advice?June 12, 2017 at 7:02 pm #4743nhhawk6Participant
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Hi, Carol. I was just reading this, but while I bet they will be just fine, 6.5″ does seem like quite a distance to the bottom of the entrance/exit. Many schools of thought, here. One being that if it is difficult to reach the bottom of the entrance, then they won’t be able to fledge until they are good and ready… i.e. premature fledging, solved! I consider it a bit differently, in that I always tack a section of hardware cloth to the inside of the front of the box. This makes it easy for them to both “peek” and fledge. It makes for quite a show! My five that fledged on June 1st were a riot; they took turns peeking for four days! Hardware cloth installation is obviously not practical for your current nestlings, but with that distance to climb, you may want to try it, for the next group. Just a thought.
Bedford, New HampshireJune 13, 2017 at 7:30 am #4751
With that rough cedar they should be able to handle it. If for some reason they haven’t fledged by day 20 you can always open the box if it’s a front or side opening. Just make sure the adults are there if you have to do that.
Atlanta, GAJune 13, 2017 at 8:13 am #4753
Problem – this is a top opener, one of 4 that we built by Missouri Dept. of Conservation specs. They have fledged many blues, but then again, most nests were quite more substantial than this one. All I can do now I guess is wait & see. Gin, would they not be able to go out of the top if necessary? We could probably cut the nails to open the front but it would mean using an electric saber saw, which would be noisy. This is day 15 and I will have time to watch the box for signs of peeking, as they usually do.June 13, 2017 at 10:39 am #4756
I remeasured and it is more like 6 1/8″ to bottom of hole. AND had forgoten, but a year or so ago we took the nails out of these boxes and put in screws for a tighter fit. SO, if worse comes to worse we could remove the screws and open up the front.June 13, 2017 at 12:44 pm #4757verachuckdaveParticipant
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That sounds scary. Good luck! and let us know how you make out.
PennsylvaniaJune 13, 2017 at 9:08 pm #4763
I think they will make it out just fine. They can hop and jump that far if they have to. You really shouldn’t have to open the box for that kind of distance, especially with the rough cedar for them to cling to.
Atlanta, GAJune 13, 2017 at 9:22 pm #4765
Okay, thanks Gin, maybe I will sleep tonight! P.S. I also just remembered that those top opener boxes have kerfs cut on the inside of the front – did this when I had TRES nest, although I’m not totally sure this particular box does. I thought we did this to all the boxes. This would really make it easier I hope.June 13, 2017 at 9:34 pm #4766tamseaModerator
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I agree with Gin. No reason to fret.
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