Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Nuthatch Nesting Update

I went by yesterday morning to check on the nuthatch nesting site.  The last time I was there I saw no activity and thought perhaps the nest had been abandoned.  Fortunately it has not.  I first noticed the activity on 19 March when the birds were working on enlarging the hole.  On 25 March, nesting material was being brought in.

The average clutch size of is five to six eggs with one egg laid each day.  Incubation period is approximately 14 days after the last egg.  During the incubation time the male will bring food to the female.  This appeares to be the activity going on now.  One or the other is never far from the nest.  The Chickadees are still showing great interest in the nesting site and were chased off a couple of times while I was watching.

The male would arrive with a goody in beak and stop outside the hole.  The female would either then come out of the nesting site as shown in the shots two and three or sometimes just take the food and disappear back to the nest.

Brown-Headed Nuthatches are monogamous and often permanently mated.  Their range is the south east US and Gulf Coast states.  They tend to be very territorial particularly during mating season.

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