Wren nest in shamrock plant

by Karen Dugan
(New Cumberland Pa)

nest in shamrock plant

nest in shamrock plant

A pair of Carolina Wrens have built their nest in my shamrock plant on the front porch. Last year, I found an incomplete nest there...and removed it.

Last week the grandkids were over to watch fireworks and bumped the planter on the porch and a "bird" flew out.

We quickly got a flashlight and peeked inside to find four pale pink eggs, and one cream with speckles. (Cowbird egg).
I can't describe our excitement!!

We now have a nature cam poised to watch their blessed event.

Mommy Wren is busy incubating...and daddy coming and going to feed her.

I checked on the net about the cowbird egg, and suspected it would diminish the potential of the Wren babies, and followed a suggestion to nuke the eggs so it wouldn't become an embryo, and replaced it.

Every time mommy takes a break we run out to adjust the cam and leave her a few meal worms on her little front porch.

It's been an exciting few days setting up to watch what happens next.

I have been a bird lover for years with may birds and feeders through-out our wooded property..even have a pair of red tailed hawks and great horned owls...but have never been privy to a birthing.

I suspect our wrens have been in residence here for a while, as I see them in the winter...but
even those sightings are rare.

Thank you for your website and the opportunity to share our excitement with you....more pictures to come!!

birds and blooms magazine cover pioneer woman magazine cover people-magazine cover first for women magazine cover
Birds and Blooms Pioneer Woman People Magazine First For Women

Comments for Wren nest in shamrock plant

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by: Jovienne

I don't know how you "nuked" to use your word an otherwise likely viable egg.

It may not be an ideal situation but for a person to intervene that way is unconscionable and to someone who actually appreciates bird watching, and animals in general I cannot fathom such an extreme and harsh action.

When my neighbor's cat perches himself near the bushes presumably looking for a house finch to catch- I may make noises from my window in an attempt to scare him off but I'm not going to harm or maim him.

There are often difficult decisions to be made when dealing with nature, ideally, it's best to err on the side of not intervening.

In my humble opinion a line is crossed when you decide to terminate the egg of another bird - how can you regard its life so indifferently and act with such cruelty?

Depending where you live it's against the law.


by: Anonymous

How can I protect the porch wrens nesting in a pot on my front porch during the fireworks?

Old nest
by: Jackie

We have an old band ones wren nest from last year. I notice that a wren was perched on the house... Will they take this nest or do I need to empty it out?

I don't want to keep them away by leaving last years mess, but, will I keep them away if I clean it out after they have been inspecting it?

Final update
by: Karen

It's been some time ago...but all three baby Carolina Wrens fledged without difficulty.

I see them walking the dog along the power line adjacent to our property. One in particular seems to follow me as we walk along. He hops bush to bush and sits waiting for me to catch up to him.

It's been a pleasure to share this with everyone, and I love this web site for allowing that. The information here is wonderful, and very helpful.

I have wonderful video's and pictures of them singing to me, and even with the snake scare, I would love to have them back next year.

Thank you for the info and help for us first time
birthing parents!!

Almost ready to fly
by: Karen

It's been wonderful watching our Carolina Wren babies grow. It's day ten since hatching, and we expect fledging soon. There are three, the forth egg did not hatch.

Mommy and daddy are doing a great job feeding and caring for them. Mommy is no longer staying with the nest, so we have become extra vigilant at night.

Especially since a black snake came on the porch last week!! We have snake repellant across the area, and have not seen him since...but what a scare.

Each morning I peek in and say hello, then leave mommy and daddy to their work. The babies now have small visible stripped feathers on their wings. Here's hoping the fledging goes well!!

Hatchlings arrive
by: Karen

We have three of the four hatchlings who arrived around supper time last evening. Mommy and Daddy were singing up a storm which drew us to the video feed. (Daddy especially!!)

This morning we took a peek and three of the eggs have hatched...hopefully the forth is not far behind.

I have pictures for update...and will try and post them.

Last night we returned from dinner to find a six foot long black snake on our front porch, just two feet away from the planter and nest. Hubby chased it off with a broom, but we spent an uneasy night watching for his/her return.

I left the video cam turned up loud for the night so we could hear any noises from Mommy Wren. We may have to take other measures to secure their nest from a potential disaster.

Any suggestions....please let us know!!

Where's the hatchlings??
by: Karen

Wellll.....yesterday was 14 days from finding our Wren eggs. Still no hatchlings. Anyone out there with some idea's??
Mommy is still sitting the eggs...and I wonder if she is as impatient as we are.
Wouldn't it be odd if all her eggs didn't develop...or is the incubation period longer than I thought??
Comments or help??

by: Karen

Our Wren babies are due this week. Mommy Wren is diligent at the task at hand, however she has removed the cow bird egg.

We checked the nest yesterday when she flew out...and the cow bird egg is missing. Did she sense it wouldn't develop?

Or perhaps she got tired of the extra "lump" under her? We are not sure just where it went...perhaps down into the shamrock plant...as it wasn't on the porch floor.

Either way...this has been fun watching and waiting with her....it has been eleven days since we found her eggs....so any day now...we hope to see some action!!

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