Thursday, June 15, 2006

Birdwatch: Two Hatched, Two to Go!

Our family of robins is growing! We've been watching with anticipation over the last two weeks as the number of eggs grew from one to four. They're supposed to hatch after 12-14 days, and yesterday marked exactly two weeks since we spotted the first egg. Here's a shot from our living room window of one of the parents standing on the nest (as you can see, the tomato plant isn't doing so hot anymore--but oh well):

Last night when we got home from church we hated to disturb them, as Mama was sitting on the nest. We try not to go out there when the parents are around, if possible. But our plants desperately needed to be watered, so we moved slowly and quietly, trying not to startle the bird. I couldn't believe how patient and brave she was before she finally flew away--I was about a foot away from her nest and still she just sat, watching me. She looked scared and I felt terrible! Steve carefully watered around the nest while she was gone, and I peeked in.

Right on schedule: One tiny robin was in the process of hatching. The eggshell was still on its head! As I watched, it finally emerged...I won't lie, it was sort of ugly (pink and hairless), but in an adorable way...then it opened its hungry little beak wide and I fell in love. Steve still thinks they're ugly but I think they're breathtaking! I felt horrible for scaring Mama away while this was in process...we hurried to get the watering done and turn the light off asap so she'd come back. And she did.

This morning I thought I heard tiny, high-pitched chirping but one of the parents was on the nest. I waited and was able to take these pictures once the parent left. Amazing! They're already getting fuzzy down, just since last night. Unfortunately they weren't opening their beaks while I was out there...I hope to get a picture of that soon.

I could sit and watch forever. I am just blown away by this beautiful, up-close glimpse of God's creation! Hard to believe these tiny birdies will be ready to leave their nest in just two weeks! I love this shot of the siblings snuggling up together:


Anonymous said...

Wow, that's amazing! It brings back cool memories for me. When we lived out in the country when I was a child, we had birds that would build a nest each summer in the Welcome wreath that hung near our front entrance. My dad would lift me up so I could watch the eggs each day and the little birds after they hatched. Very cool. I'm glad you could get these pictures!

Kayla said...

What neat pictures! It's such a miricle how an egg, while being sat on to stay warm by it's mother, can produce a baby bird in 2 weeks. I am sorry about your tomato plant though. Fresh tomatos for BLT's in the summer is the best!!!!

The Chinlund Family said...

How precious and wonderful that you got to witness that little birth! Wouldn't it be neat if, in two weeks when they learn to fly, they decide to stay around your yard?

Amy said...


would be great, except a) we don't have a "yard" to speak of, and b) we'll be moving almost immediately after they leave the nest. too bad, because I read online that robins often return to nest in the same spot if the first time was successful. so if we left all our pots out there they might come back and do the whole thing again!

Steph said...

That is just wonderful Amy! We had a Cardinal nest just outside our glass sliding door in some bushes. We had a perfect view from the other side of the glass! It was stunning- and amazing! I am jealous that you got such great photos! Mine didn't turn out- but the experience of seeing it that close up was priceless. PLEASE continue to take photos- and watch those birdies closely. They grow up and fly away so fast. We actually had 2 of the bitty babies fall out of the nest (about 1 story up). We scooped them up with a soup ladle and put them back in the nest. Mom came back and loved on them- so all was good! :) I pray everyday that they will come back to our house next year (I saw online that Cardinals may come back to the same nest if it is untouched!).