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Ella McGlaughlin

Selinsgrove, PA, USA


Last night one of my worst nightmares came true, not only did I lose all of the robin’s young… but also all of the mockingbird nestlings. I was walking by the robin’s bush and saw needles scattered everywhere. There was one dead baby in the bush, and the bottom of the nest was shredded. I came to find piles upon piles of feathers, with the adult female robin clearly being dead. Knowing a predator had been around, I rushed to check the mockingbird nest, as the adult male had been screaming the entire time I have been home. I have never had a mockingbird nest before and I was thrilled to watch these hatchlings grow up. Sadly, the nest was torn out of its place and all the hatchlings were gone.
THE GOOD NEWS: all song sparrow babies fledged, my 5 bluebird nestlings are well, and I still have two other robin nests, built quite high, that are being raised and are safe. Nature can be cruel and unforgiving, but that’s part of what makes each successful brood so exciting and warming.

The Worst Has Occured…

7 responses to “The worst has occured…”

  1. Was it your cat?What was it?

    • Ella McGlaughlin says:

      I don’t have any cats, and our neighbors don’t have any outdoor cats. There is a stray black cat that roams our backyard and got into a nest in one of our apple trees. My best bet is a raccoon or cat though.

  2. Ava J says:

    That’s so sad! It’s great that you have other nests though.
    Earlier this year, I saw a female and a male Red-Bellied Woodpecker repeatedly going into this cavity over the span of a few days. We finally realized that they had a nest and we were so excited to eventually see the babies because it would be our first time seeing juvenile Red-Bellied Woodpeckers. One night there was a storm and I awoke to find the branch on the ground. It had been a dead branch so it just broke off of the tree when the storm came. I went to double check later that day and found I think 4 babies dead on the ground. It was heartbreaking. They most likely dies from the fall, but they were so young, no feathers or anything.
    The circle of life is beautiful, but it can also be pretty cruel.

    • Ella McGlaughlin says:

      Agreed! I’m so lucky to witness as many successful broods as I do, but it really is devastating when a nest fails, especially having multiple occur in one night. Woodpeckers are so fascinating! I’m sorry to hear about that brood.

  3. Racoons are sneaky and they come in the night but cats are very sneaky to and like to eat birds,so.

  4. Robyn Bailey says:

    So sorry to hear about this Ella. 🙁

  5. Texas Bird Family says:

    So sad!

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