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Heart ForNature

Louisville, KY, USA


I found this egg underneath a bush nest to my grandparents feeders. As many birds were feeding there, I can’t be sure which laid it. It is a bit larger than a penny—white with brown speckles. What species is the egg and HOW IN THE WORLD did it get there? Surely the mom wouldn’t have laid an egg on bare ground….


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5 responses to “WHAT IN THE WORLD?!?”

  1. Holly Grant, Project Assistant says:

    It’s certainly hard to predict what happened to this egg, but I can offer some possibilities. The egg may have indeed laid there by a bird. Though this probably isn’t a ground nest, birds are sometimes forced to lay their eggs in less-than-ideal locations. For example, let’s say a bird had built a nest and was getting ready to lay its first egg. Then, something happened to the nest (predator, invasive species, etc.) – their bodies are still growing the egg and it needs to be laid somewhere when it’s ready. Bird eggs can be found in really odd places because of this! Alternatively, because it has a crack, it may have been deposited there by a predator – one that stole it from the nest and dropped it on its way (perhaps a flying predator, such as a corvid species). The hole in the egg also looks reminiscent of one that a House Wren might make in host species eggs as they take over a nest box. Sometimes, the House Wren will also remove these eggs from the box they’re taking over.

    As for the species who laid this egg, ID of eggs can be pretty difficult without context clues (such as it’s size, or the surrounding nesting material), but this looks most like an egg from a chickadee, nuthatch, or perhaps swallow (Barn, Cave).

  2. HeartForNature says:

    Could it be an ejected Brown-Headed Cowbird egg?

  3. Kylie Beevers says:

    I don’t think its a cowbird egg …
    It’s really a mystery, isn’t it?

  4. Bird Cams says:

    I think it might be a house sparrow

  5. Kylie Beevers says:

    Or a house finch

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