First clutch of 5 eggs disappeared….same pair built a new nest in another box and she laid 4 eggs… hatching was about 5 days away and the female has been gone for 3 days. The first day the male was looking for her and then he disappeared for a few days. He came back today for mealworms but still no sign of the female. When should I remove the eggs? They were due to hatch this weekend
I wouldn’t touch the eggs unless you can be absolutely, positively sure they’ve been abandoned. Are they ice cold to the touch? Can you place a piece of grass across the entrance hole to be sure you’re not just missing seeing the birds going into the box? They can be very sneaky when they want to be!
She is definitely gone…he hasn’t been around too much so he knows she is gone too. The eggs were cold and there was a dead meal worm on one of the eggs…I’m hoping he can attract another female although they are probably busy with there hatchlings right now in upstate NY. We have always seen success both with the blues and swallows so this failure is new to us lol….
I think it’s a miracle every time a bird lives to fledge. Kind of like healthy human births are a miracle. When you think about it, the odds are against a 100% successful nest because so much can go wrong. People who always witness total success year after year lead some kind of charmed life!
What I would do is wedge a piece of grass in the hole and see if it is removed within 24 hours. You could also carefully put a dot on each egg with a sharpie. No rotation and the grass stays in place means they are truly abandoned. I always hate to remove eggs and a nest but I have done it more than once.