Friday, May 1, 2009


Yes, it's true!.

No, it's not the Bear and G3 -- we're a bit ancient for that. Not our kids, either.

It's a pair of Red-breasted Nuthatches. They have hollowed out a nesting cavity in our apple tree, which is about a yard (or a metre) from the back corner of our house. (That's were the bird baths and feeders are located.)

About Red-breasted Nuthatches.

First, there's a picture in the sidebar. Normally about 4.5 inches long -- not a big bird, but feisty!

The nest is about 5 feet above the ground, and the outside is being lined with pitch, to keep predators away. If there are eggs in the nest (usually 4 - 7), they should hatch in about 12 to 14 days from now (which is when we'll see the parents carrying food to the nest). They like seeds from coniferous trees (we have several big spruces in our area, with cones all over the ground), but they also love sunflower seeds (which is what we stock in our feeder).

We'll keep you "abreast" of developments.


Natalie said...

Oh, what a cute little mama birdie! Looking forward to seeing her chicks.x

Gutsy Living said...

There isn't that much red on the breast, compared to blue on the back. beautiful bird. The nest is very low. Don't cats and other predators get to the eggs?
Thanks for your interaction on my blog. Glad to see you're still posting. You said, you'd take a break.

Reasons said...

Bless those birds. Can we have pictures? xx

Rob-bear said...

Joanne: Picture of the cutie is on the right hand side of the page. This one isn't ours. Trying to photo ours would be too disruptive for them, at this point. I would hate for them to abandon the nest because of my intrusiveness. I'll try later.

Rob-bear said...

Sonia: So sorry I forgot to reply. The entrance to the nest cavity is so small that the only predator that could get at the eggs or chicks is probably a wren. We haven't had wrens for a few years, and tend to discourage them, as they are so destructive.

Mrs4444 said...

It's a good thing you probably have two entrances to your house; it sounds like you're going to be getting dive bombed in a few weeks! :)

Rob-bear said...

Actually, neither our front nor side door is close to the nest, so we're safe. And when we go out to water the garden or put out bird feed, the nuthatches complain, but don't really bother us. Exciting times.

nikkicrumpet said...

Very cool! I love Nut Hatches...I love to watch the way they creep up and down the pole of my bird feeder. They are such spunky little things. It will be fun watching the baby birds make their appearance!