At this time last week this nest box (the Cow Pasture, above) was completely empty, no nest material and certainly no eggs. A new nest has been built and so far two eggs have been deposited in the box.
Last week there were four eggs in the nest which is next to the Bungee Jump. I and Ranger Kristin peeked into the box Saturday (6/1) and there were only three eggs. What happen to the other egg? The egg had to be removed sometime between Tuesday morning (5/28) and Saturday afternoon (6/1). I assume the missing egg was removed by one of the parents.
Despite the missing egg, there is good news. The nest now contains three tiny bluebird nestlings.
The three chickadee nestlings have fledged from the nest behind the Sail Boat Pond. I was a bit surprised that they had fledged, they looked so small and fragile last week. However, my records show that they hatched on or before May 21 which is plenty of time for them to have grown and fledged, over two weeks time.
Now for the Amphimeadow nest box. If you remember from last week, there were five bluebird eggs within this nest. There are now four nestlings. All nestlings seem to be doing well. As I opened the box, one lifted its head, its gaping mouth at its fullest.
I can’t explain what happened to the fifth egg in this nest. As with the missing egg in the nest box next to the Bungee Jump it is no longer there and the assumption is that one of the parent birds removed it.
After having fledged five chickadees and being vacant for two weeks, the nest box next to the Picnic Dome contains the beginnings of a new bluebird nest.
And lastly, the Butterfly House nest. Last week this nest box had one lonely egg nestled within its pine straw cupped bluebird nest. It now contains five bright blue gems.
So, here’s where we stand. We have five active nests, all bluebird. One is under construction, two contain a total of 7 eggs (2 in one, 5 in the other), and two nests hold 7 nestlings (3 in one, 4 in the other). The one empty nest, the nest at the Sail Boat Pond, has recently fledged 3 chickadees and is being readied for new occupants.
See you next week!
Greg Dodge is a professional naturalist as well as a writer, videographer and producer of natural history DVDs. His images have been used in various TV productions, museum displays, and corporate videos. Above all, he has a fascination and passion for all things natural.
He can be found Tuesday thru Saturday in Explore the Wild, Catch the Wind, or on the Dinosaur Trail. Ask him what’s new in the wild!