Ready, Set, Nest!
The first day of spring was yesterday, March 20th, but the birds don’t seem to read calendars. Across the southern states, birds are already showing signs of nesting activity. Glenda Simmons of Florida reports that a Carolina Wren pair has just fledged four young from a box she had stored in her garage. This is the earliest record for this species in Florida, according to the Florida Breeding Bird Atlas. We’re also getting reports of incubating Great Horned Owls and Barred Owls. These species begin nesting as early as January or February in the Northeast. Fans of our Facebook page have submitted pictures of Eastern Bluebirds carrying nest materials into boxes. And right here in Ithaca, New York, the Lab of Ornithology’s own Red-tailed Hawk cam is live, featuring Big Red now incubating her three eggs. If you’ve got early birds nesting already, we invite you to go ahead and begin submitting data to NestWatch.org. And if you’re still surrounded by snow, don’t worry–it won’t be long now!