Friday, 1 May 2015

A surprise, speedy nest build!

A Robin has shown more than a little urgency in collecting dry moss and leaves from my garden earlier this evening. Having had a push on garden works of late as the weather holds, it seemed to be doing the same tugging away at dry material from rocks around my small pond. At speed, back and forth it went!




To my surprise and delight the Robin flew right past me straight up to an open-fronted nestbox in my ivy clad pergola (the variety Sulphur heart on this side). This Blackbird nestbox has never been used despite being in my garden since 2008 (a birthday gift from my Mum and Dad). My Mum will be thrilled when I tell her now. I'm taking a guess that the Robin just discovered this nestbox this afternoon.






March 2008 when the nestbox was first put up.


What a surprise start to May! Now, the only thing about this location is that the Robin pair could have the potential of noisy neighbours! I do hope this doesn't put them off. On the positive, the ivy has grown considerably since the nestbox was put up and should now give good cover.

Wishing you all a great weekend and hoping that you too have nest building activity in your gardens and are happy with progress of your garden works. May has always been my favourite month in the garden but it is extra special this year with our first (known about) Robin's nest!


This post was published by Shirley for shirls gardenwatch in May 2015. Images 2, 3 & 4 are video grabs.

8 comments:

Lisa Greenbow said...

How exciting to have a bird take up residence in a special box. I hope it has success and you have great fun watching all the action.

Orchids and Nature said...

Lets hope you have a happy ending for the robin. No sites taken up in my 4 nest boxes this year.

Sue Garrett said...

The great tit that was roosting in our camera box has left and we are so disappointed,

Brian Skeys said...

I hope your Robin is successful. Ivy is much maligned as a plant but it is so useful for wildlife. I was only checking your blog the other day, I hadn't seen any posts since January. Some lovely spring bird photos.

SeagullSuzie said...

I hope it's a success, and how lovely to have a nest in your garden and capture the building. I have a blackbird pair gathering bugs and worms for their young. The nest is close but not in my garden.

Angie said...

Taking the cue from William and Kate :)
I put up a robin box about 3 years ago but I suspect it's not private enough yet and the part of the hedge I am allowing to grow to cover it is not quite there.
I hope he and his mate have a successful time of it.

Midmarsh John said...

Great news. At an ideal position to be able to keep an eye on it. My boxes seem to be being shunned this year.

Shirley said...

Hello everyone, thanks for all your comments. That’s a shame to hear so many nest boxes are not in use this year.

Lisa, yes, it really is :-) There was I, so busy making changes to garden borders with occasional walks back to my potting shed and I had no idea what was beginning! I initially thought the Robin was just following me about – which it did do right beside my feet at one point as I moved a plant into a big hole. I too hope it’s a success. However I do have concerns on its location now. More on that soon :-)

David, Absolutely, a couple of years ago we had a juvenile Robin hanging about a while and what a little sweetie it was. I’d love to see more but based on my camera nestboxes the newly fledged birds seem to leave the garden which is always a shame. Others come in though :-)

Sue, that is a shame about your Great tits, I’ve noticed in previous years that blue tits and great tits will fight over a box and the rooster ends up leaving and the box gets left empty. Ours is empty too this year with nothing but a good dose of droppings and some bits of grass and moss. However, we were lucky last year and I’ll get round to telling that story – we had a Great tit family for the first time!

Brian, me too! Yes, I agree on the ivy although I have to admit that I do trim my pergola ivy as I pass through this area to washing lines etc. Most whippy bits get pruned back (at my height level) and as I do it gets thicker so its win, win for me and the wildlife that will be living there. Yes, I’ve been extremely lean on posts this year. I was partially stepping back considering how to freshen up the blog post format and content as after 8 years blogging a lot has been said from my garden before. Then I got distracted with some real gardening and time just flew away. I’ve heaps of new stuff to share though when I get properly back on the blogging wagon ;-)

Suzie, thanks, it was a serious surprise to see a Robin collect nesting material as I’ve never seen that before. I too have been seeing Blackbirds collect the sunflower hearts I’ve put on ground feeders so there must be chicks around here somewhere too. Every year we see Blackbird fledglings although I’ve no idea where they nest – perhaps in my hedge but I’ve listened along it and heard nothing inside. Enjoy seeing your Blackbird young when they visit you :-)

Angie, Ha-ha… funnily enough I’ve cut into my ivy for nestboxes to go up in previous years but they didn’t get used (the standard open fronted Robin ones). Perhaps I picked the wrong side but I tried various places. The one mentioned here was more covered but I pruned some ivy away so the birds would find it but after 7 years I didn’t expect it to make any difference. Patience I guess is the answer – good luck with yours. When the weather breaks again I’ll get more images of this area – the Robins might not be happy here. More on that next time :-)

John, it is brilliant news, but this position may have potential problems yet. Sorry to hear about your shunned boxes this year – my camera one had too much competition from Great & Blue tits during the day and the rooster left. It did look like some moss had come in so it too has been shunned. Last year though – we had Great tits nesting for the first time :-)