Best laid plans....

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Feltwell
Posts: 5797
Joined: Sun 18th May, 2008 7:28 pm
Location: Shropshire, England

Best laid plans....

Post by Feltwell » Sat 10th Apr, 2021 11:36 am

So, Spring is here, and thoughts turn to finishing off the brickwork renovation at Feltwell towers - it's only year no.3 :shock: but it will definitely be finished this year, it's 90% done now. In a few weeks hopefully the danger of frost will be over and I can crack on.

So, I head round the back of my garage, where there is a 3' wide gap between my garage wall and next door's house, where I keep my scaffold tower frames. I start pulling them out, then halfway through, hang on what's that......

A blackbird has decided to build their nest on my tower frames! Where they are stacked together it's formed a nice little shelf about 6' up.

So, I stopped of course. No evidence of Mrs Blackbird but there is one egg in the nest, so I'm not sure if it's been abandoned or not - I shall keep an eye on it for a few days. I've pulled enough frames out before I realised that I can start work at least, though I'll need the rest in time!

I have history with Blackbirds. They don't build their nests inside buildings of course - except no one told the blackbird that. A few years ago one got in through an open window into my garage and built a nest on top of the wall plate. I'd still work in the garage but avoid going into that corner, stopped quite a few jobs, but we got used to each other and she'd just sit there watching me work. When her chick finally hatched I had to rescue it and put it outside, as it wouldn't have been able to get out - luckily Mum was OK with that and kept on feeding him/her. Stopped me leaving the garage window open in future years though!

Still, at least I know where to put a blackbird nest box now, think I better get on and make one.....

Flyfisher
Posts: 9895
Joined: Sat 14th Oct, 2006 9:51 pm
Location: Norfolk, UK

Re: Best laid plans....

Post by Flyfisher » Sat 10th Apr, 2021 2:24 pm

Feltwell wrote:
Sat 10th Apr, 2021 11:36 am
Still, at least I know where to put a blackbird nest box now, think I better get on and make one.....
I was having a bit of a workshop tidy-up a couple of months ago (it does occasionally happen!) and decided to knock together a few nesting boxes out of the various bits of scrap wood I had tidied up.

I only got around to putting them up a few weeks ago and was not holding out much hope for occupants as while researching for sizes the advice was to put them in place in the autumn so that the local birds could 'get used to them' well before the next nesting season.

I can only assume the Great Tit that has quickly taken up residence in one of the boxes fixed to a walnut tree doesn't have internet access and so didn't read this bit of advice :wink:

The open-fronted boxes, supposedly favoured by Robins and Wrens have not yet attracted any occupants, despite both species regularly spotted in the vicinity. Must be nesting elsewhere. Ingrates!

Feltwell
Posts: 5797
Joined: Sun 18th May, 2008 7:28 pm
Location: Shropshire, England

Re: Best laid plans....

Post by Feltwell » Sat 10th Apr, 2021 5:08 pm

It can take a while, good that you've got 1 bird in! I made a "terraced" 3-in-1 nest box for the sparrows, they ignored it for 2 years but since then 2 out of the 3 compartments - rarely the same ones! - have been in use every year.

I felt guilty at (possibly) disturbing the blackbird, so some old shelves that I stripped out a few weeks ago have been turned into a new blackbird "Des Res" today.

Gave me a distraction from what I should be doing, renovating the bathroom. I'll have some marine ply left over from doing the floor, I shall make up some more nest boxes later in the year. Always nice to encourage the birds, even though we do seem to have at least 50% of the UK house sparrow population!

malcolm
Posts: 1093
Joined: Wed 18th Sep, 2013 6:21 pm
Location: Bedford UK

Re: Best laid plans....

Post by malcolm » Sat 10th Apr, 2021 7:33 pm

I've got a couple of Robins but I'm not sure exactly where they are nesting. There's a bird box they've used previously but it looks too full of nest to fit any birds in. Are you supposed to empty them out after nesting season?

Feltwell
Posts: 5797
Joined: Sun 18th May, 2008 7:28 pm
Location: Shropshire, England

Re: Best laid plans....

Post by Feltwell » Sat 10th Apr, 2021 8:31 pm

Yes, and sterilise the box. But, to be honest, I've usually forgotten and the birds still come back and use it the following year!

https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildl ... the%20lid.

malcolm
Posts: 1093
Joined: Wed 18th Sep, 2013 6:21 pm
Location: Bedford UK

Re: Best laid plans....

Post by malcolm » Mon 12th Apr, 2021 3:25 pm

Feltwell wrote:
Sat 10th Apr, 2021 8:31 pm
Yes, and sterilise the box. But, to be honest, I've usually forgotten and the birds still come back and use it the following year!

https://www.rspb.org.uk/birds-and-wildl ... the%20lid.
Ahhh. That makes sense. I have no idea where the Robins are nesting but I'll empty the nest box at the end of the year in the hope they'll be in there next year. I've been doing a lot of tidying up and it's a worry when there might be a nest hidden somewhere.

ElectronicFur
Posts: 100
Joined: Sun 6th May, 2018 11:18 pm
Location: Monmouthshire

Re: Best laid plans....

Post by ElectronicFur » Tue 13th Apr, 2021 2:03 pm

I had a similar problem. Was going to fix the hole in one of the sash window frames with some Timbabuild, but some blue tits decided to build a nest inside the window frame.

noj
Posts: 315
Joined: Fri 16th Aug, 2013 12:06 pm
Location: Bromley

Re: Best laid plans....

Post by noj » Tue 20th Apr, 2021 11:38 am

I tied a chunk of thermafleece to a cane in the garden this morning and within five minutes there was a disorderly queue of bluetits ripping bits off. Spending more time watching them than working on the house.

A couple of the nest boxes are occupied despite the attrition from our self feeding cat.

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