EABLs and Abandoned Chickadee Nest

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  • #6426
    Deb
    Participant

      Hello all – Our nesting pair’s clutch was wiped out by a HOWR. The little menace showed up out of NOWHERE never had a chance to set up a HOWR guard :(. The HOWR also picked through a Chickadee nest which seems vacant. No nest cup but there’s a layer of fur still on top – what the HOWR didn’t remove anyhow.

      The EABLs are looking at that nest now. Should I leave the chickadee nest intact? They’re checking it out quite a bit and I’ve seen no chickadees trying to defend it.

      #6427
      Carol – Mid-Mo.
      Participant

        I think you should remove the nest so the blues can “make their own”. I know BB usually build nests out of fine grasses and pine needles if available, very different from dees. Others need to chime in here.

        #6429
        Deb
        Participant

          Thanks Carol. I saw the male carrying stuff out of the box but no sooner than that, does a chickadee show up! An hour or so later, I went out to check, the female chickadee flew out and there are 4 eggs underneath the fur “plug” that the male EABL must’ve pulled out. Looks like this house belongs to the chickadees – now it looks like I need to put up a wren guard. Hopefully I can convince the bluebirds to move back into the house that pesky wren raided. For such a small bird they sure do make a BIG problem.

          #6430
          Sassy
          Participant

            Hi Deb: I am so sorry to hear about you losing your whole clutch. I just covered my two BB houses with plastic bags. I had a pair of HOWR’s building a nest in one, the male was singing and singing as he sat atop, so covered it, then I saw they were in and out of the other BB box, so hopefully that will deter them. I know what you mean about showing up in a blink of the eye. I have no BB’s but won’t get any either if the boxes are taken over by HOWR’s.
            Wishing you luck with the BB’s rebuilding and starting another family.
            Connie (PA)

            #6431
            Deb
            Participant

              Thanks Sassy. What is concerning/troubling me now is watching the EABLs continue to hang around the chickadee box. From what I understand and experience they typically won’t nest again in the same season where a box was raided. I just hope they don’t harass the Chickadees to abandon.

              I hope your HOWR problem goes away too. We’ve plugged many house holes here for this very reason. Made the mistake of letting them nest one year. Like the site Sialia.org says, “If you allow House Wrens to use your boxes, I predict you will regret it in time.” Made that mistake once…once!

              #6432
              Carol – Mid-Mo.
              Participant

                Deb, looks like you are right – the dees have this nest if they have eggs there!! They are a very desirable bird I hear, but I have never had any nest here. Hopefully the blues will get their own nest soon, but you will need to leave the dees’ nest alone & hope for a successful fledging there.

                #6433
                Maybelle
                Participant

                  Several years ago 4 eggs of our WEBL pair were destroyed. Based on her history, this female would likely have laid 2 more eggs for a total of 6.

                  Broken eggs do not make for a clean nest so I cleaned it out on April 26. By May 4 she was seriously building another nest and the first egg appeared on May 11.

                  She laid 6 eggs in the new nest, but here is the strange thing: Only two out of the six hatched. It appeared that only the number that would have completed the first clutch were fertile.

                  So this experience tells me it is possible bluebirds will rebuild after a raid.

                  Cari
                  Willamette Valley, Oregon

                  #6438
                  tamsea
                  Moderator

                    Put a hole reducer on that dee nest as quickly as you can. Is it 1 1/4″? I think you need 1 1/4″ for them. The blues can’t get in. Or maybe you’ve already done that?

                    • This reply was modified 5 years, 11 months ago by tamsea.

                    Tammy

                    #6440
                    tamsea
                    Moderator

                      Sialis.org says “You can install a 1.125″hole guard to keep House Sparrows and other larger birds (including bluebirds) out after the chickadee starts to build a nest, preferably after the first egg is laid to ensure that they have bonded to the box.” I’m pretty sure I use a 1 1/4″ that I get at wild birds unlimited. Put it on the inside of the box.

                      Tammy

                      #6453
                      dogsandbirds
                      Moderator

                        Hole reducer! Hold reducer! I can’t type quickly enough! Those EABL are perfectly capable of killing those dee eggs.

                        Gin
                        Atlanta, GA

                        #6468
                        Carol – Mid-Mo.
                        Participant

                          Deb, take Tammy & Gin’s advise about a hole reducer – I never thought about that since I have not had any experience with Dee’s, don’t believe I have ever seen one!

                          #6474
                          ReneeinWinslow
                          Participant

                            I would put a wren guard on the box too.


                            When the new wears off the old shines through

                            When The New Wears Off The Old Shines Through.

                            #6475
                            ReneeinWinslow
                            Participant

                              House sparrows can get in a 1 1/4″ hole here.


                              When the new wears off the old shines through

                              When The New Wears Off The Old Shines Through.

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