First observed pair on nest 03-12-13. May have been present since previous week. This pair has successfully nested here through 2018. The seem to be the first to arrive in the area. There is a nest cam here.
Look for 2 adults on the nest. The adult pair will show pair bonding behaviors such as vocalizations, aerial sky dances, and the male feeding the female fish. You may see the pair copulating, which typically begins 14 days before laying eggs.
Females will lay 1 - 4 eggs at a rate of one egg every 1 - 2 days. After laying, incubation starts. Look for adults taking turns sitting low in the nest incubating eggs. The incubation period can last 35 - 43 days.
Chicks hatch ~39 days after incubation begins. Look for adults bringing food to the nest and making "head bows" into the center. Chicks typically can't be seen until they are 2 - 3 weeks old, so feeding behavior is the only way to know chicks are there.
Around 4 weeks after hatching, look for the heads of chicks to show over the rim of the nest, particularly when adults bring food to the nest. Other times they lie flat and are harder to see. Count the number of chicks in the nest before they learn to fly
Chicks begin flying around 7 - 8 weeks old, and are still fed by the adults. Count the number of chicks who have successfully fledged the nest and are observed flying.
Chick Last Observed
4 - 10 weeks after fledging, chicks begin leaving the nest area to migrate south, once they have learned to fly and feed themselves. Record the date that the last chick left the nest.
Look for signs of nest failure like adult abandonment, adults no longer incubating eggs or feeding young.
5/16 Egg #1 collapsed (49 days)
5/18 Egg #2 Hole in the egg, the resident female consumed the contents of the egg. (48 days)
5/23 Egg #3 (51 days) Grackle punched a hole in the egg. The resident female consumed the contents of the egg. Then incubated the nest egg. 5/24 Grackle moved the egg shell.
5/24 The pair were on & off the nest.
Male brought sweatshirt to nest. It eventually got by the nest bole. 4/3 one egg was hidden under the shirt for several hours & over night. The morning of 4/4 as male was leaving, the shirt was caught on his talons, and moved as he was leaving. One egg was caught in the hoodie & got moved to the edge of the nest. The egg stayed by the edge most of the day. The pair eventually got the egg back to the bole later that evening. (The sweatshirt is caught between a rod & the pylon, hopefully secured for the season).