Thursday, June 23, 2011

Kingbirds Nesting

On my return to the college, I was pleased to see that the pair of Western Kingbirds nesting in the roof of the basketball court has successfully hatched some eggs. In every previous year, these Kingbirds have successfully raised four youngsters but I'm not sure how many eggs they have laid and hatched this year. So far I've caught glimpses of at least two youngsters.

The nest, which looks a lot less well-constructed than in earlier years, is in a place that makes it extremely difficult to photograph.

The normal routine is for one adult to perch on a fence or tree near the nest while the other goes off to find food.

The perched bird may use the time to catch up on some grooming while its partner is away.

When the foraging bird returns, it flies up to the nest to deliver food to the babies.

Then this bird perches nearby while the other parent flies off to find food.

Every so often, the adult that brings food also carries away a fecal sac from the nest.

Although the adults normally stay at the nest for only a few seconds, they occasionally stay for a minute or more. Are they perhaps regurgitating food for the babies?

As one of the youngsters has already begun stretching its wings, I suspect it won't be long before they start venturing out of the nest and along the roof supports. And after that it won't be long until the parents move them down to one of the nearby trees.


Birdwoman said...

Ah, they grow up so fast!

L7 said...

Really they grow up fastest.
Thanks for sharing..

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