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Archive for the 'Bird nests' Category

Hummingbird nest on a basketball net! Can you believe it?

Mama hummingbird and two babies in her basketball net nest. Photo by the Hartman Family, Moraga, CA
1hum bsktballnet hartman family moraga

Gary:
We thought you might be interested in seeing where a hummingbird made her nest in our backyard. She picked out the net of my son’s basketball hoop. We first noticed it a couple of weeks ago. A few days ago we noticed that there are now two baby hummingbirds living there. We thought you might like to see some pics. Best,
Bob, Bobbie, Travis & Haley Hartman, Moraga, California

Hartman Family:
Great photos! I dare anyone to slam dunk the ball with those hummers guarding THAT net!

Just when you think you’ve seen it all, the hummingbirds come up with a wonderful new spot to build a nest. Those little characters are really special! /Gary

Two baby hummingbirds in a basketball net nest. Photo by the Hartman Family, Moraga, CA
1hum basktballnet2 hartman family moraga

Posted on Tuesday, July 19th, 2011
Under: Bird nests, hummingbirds | No Comments »

Bird nest found hidden in backyard BBQ

Bird nest  in BBQ. Photo by Roger Stone (shared by Judy Wobleski), Walnut Creek
1nest roger stone wc

Gary:
We’ve been a little late getting started on our summer barbecuing this year, but decided to fire it up last night.  Fortunately, we opened it up to clean it first, and lo and behold – there was a bird’s nest sitting right there to the side of the grill.  We never noticed any activity during the spring, but then we weren’t looking for it by our BBQ.  Even our 3 indoor cats didn’t seem to notice.  Do you have any idea what kind of nest it is? One of your loyal readers,
Judy Wobleski, Walnut Creek, California

Judy:
Looks like it might be a brown towhee nest, although I could be wrong. Clever to use the BBQ as a nest site, don’t you think? Nice little armor-plated hiding place to keep the cats and jays away … ahem … until it’s time to fire up the old BBQ!

Anyone else out there discover clever, unique or weird bird nest locations? Send them in! /Gary

Posted on Friday, June 24th, 2011
Under: Bird nests, Birds | No Comments »

Last baby to leave the nest, mouth wide open, waiting to be fed

1baby last margaret robideaux san leandro

Gary:
Last baby to leave nest.

I took this today in my backyard.
Margaret Robideaux, San Leandro, California

Margaret:
Classic baby bird … its mouth wide open, waiting to be fed! /Gary

Posted on Thursday, June 16th, 2011
Under: Babies, Bird nests, Birds | No Comments »

Hawk peeks over top of nest while incubating eggs

Swainson’s hawk in nest. Photo by Dave Harper, Oakley, CA
1swainsonsnest dave harper oakley

I get many requests from readers wanting to know what hawk nests look like.

Check out the Swainson’s hawk nest above. Note mama hawk just peeking over the top of the nest while she’s incubating her eggs. Red-tailed hawks, similar in size to the Swainson’s, construct their nests out of an identical-size mix of sticks, leaves, grass, etc. /Gary

Posted on Monday, May 23rd, 2011
Under: Bird nests, Hawks, nesting, Red-tailed hawk | No Comments »

Birds pull apart door mat to get nest-making materials

Door mat being pulled apart by birds looking for nesting materials. Photo by Bill Johnson, Walnut Creek, CA
1birdmat bill johnson wc

Gary:
Perhaps you can solve the mystery of what has been happening to our front door mat.  Something has been either tearing at or eating away at this mat, as you can see in the picture.  At first I thought it might be the work of a skunk or a raccoon, but now I am wondering if certain birds are doing it.  I did see a bird fly away once from that general area.  I suppose it would make for good nesting material, but it would have been awfully hard to initially pull it apart like this.  Are birds that strong?
Bill Johnson, Walnut Creek, California

Bill:
Looks like birds to me. There’s a lot of strength in those beaks. I’ve observed birds pulling on plastic window screens until they fray so they can use that material in their nests, and that stuff is a lot tougher than your door mat. I’ve also seen bird nests made out of plastic bags, which certainly improved their waterproofing. The Lindsay Wildlife Museum in Walnut Creek also has a crow’s nest made of electrical wire that was found in the attic of a building under construction. Birds seem to be adapting quite well to living in urban and suburban areas. That’s why I call our backyards, the “Urban Wilderness.” /Gary

Posted on Wednesday, May 4th, 2011
Under: Bird nests, Birds, Urban Wilderness | No Comments »

Hummingbirds nest in the strangest places

Mobile hummingbird. Photo by Larry Johnson, Walnut Creek, CA
humm nest 2 larry johnson wc

Gary:
Our hummer is at it again.  Last year she used the fan light for her nest.  This year we denied her that spot because of the mess it made … so she chose the fish mobile, and just sits there enjoying the ride.  I wonder if her babies will  be dizzy birds?
Larry Johnson, Walnut Creek, Calif.

Larry:
All hummingbirds tend to be dizzy little characters, if you know what I mean and I think you do.

Kind of reminds me of the mama hummingbird who constructed her tiny nest inside a glass porch light, right up next to the light bulb. I wonder if her babies had a tan? Hummers. You gotta love ‘em. /Gary

Mobile hummingbird and nest. Photo by Larry Johnson, Walnut Creek, CA
humm nest1 larry johnson wc

Posted on Thursday, February 24th, 2011
Under: Bird nests, hummingbirds, nesting | No Comments »

Western bluebirds: Catching insects in a pesticide-free garden

Western bluebird parents catching insects to feed young. (Brian Murphy/Walnut Creek, CA)
bluebirds, brian murphy

Gary:
Attached is what happens when western bluebirds nest in a pesticide-free garden like The Gardens at Heather Farm in Walnut Creek, CA. There is such an abundance of insects to feed young, the parents have to take turns to get into the nest box as they are catching insects so quickly.  The flight to catch insects is less than 100 feet from the box into the gardens.
Brian, Walnut Creek, California

Brian:
Down with pesticides … UP with bluebirds! Thanks, Brian! /Gary

Posted on Tuesday, May 11th, 2010
Under: Bird nests, Birds, Western bluebirds | 1 Comment »

Bird Nests: 4th Annual Gary’s Wildest Bird Nest Contest

Bald eagle nest. Photo by Flickr user keithminer used under a Creative Commons License.
eaglenest keithminer

Wildest Bird Nests!

Guess what, everyone? It’s time for my fourth annual Gary’s Wildest Bird Nest Contest!

Do you have a bird nest (or nests) in your yard? OK, it may not be an eagle nest, but grab your camera, take a photo and enter it anyway!
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Monday, April 19th, 2010
Under: Bird Nest Contest, Bird nests, Birds, wild birds | 1 Comment »

Bird Nests: 4th Annual Gary’s Wildest Bird Nest Contest

Hummingbird nest and hummingbird with egg
hummegg1

It’s time once again for the 4th Annual Gary’s Wildest Bird Nest Contest!

Categories: 1. Most Unusual Nest Building Materials. 2. Flimsiest Nest. 3. Weirdest Nest Location. 4. Most Unique Bird. 5. Most Artistic Nest.

NOTE: A Grand Prize will be awarded for the Most Wonderful Nest of All. (More on this later.)
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Posted on Monday, April 5th, 2010
Under: Bird Nest Contest, Bird nests, Birds, wild birds | No Comments »

Bird Nests: Time for 4th Annual Gary’s Wildest Bird Nest Contest!

Mourning dove and baby in nest. Photo by Ernie & Sandy Verdoes, Fremont, CA.
ernie & sandy verdoes

It’s time for the 4th Annual Gary’s Wildest Bird Nest Contest!

Categories: 1. Most Unusual Nest Building Materials. 2. Flimsiest Nest. 3. Weirdest Nest Location. 4. Most Unique Bird. 5. Most Artistic Nest.

NOTE: A Grand Prize will be awarded for the Most Wonderful Nest of All. (More on this later.)

Prizes: Great Prizes for contest category winners: Fancy new feeders, fancy birdseed, bird books and more.

Rules: Nest must be on your property in the San Francisco Bay Area. There are two ways to enter:
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Posted on Tuesday, March 30th, 2010
Under: Bird Nest Contest, Bird nests, wild birds | No Comments »