Curious how baby birds can withstand bug bites?

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This topic contains 2 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by MDgreenery MDgreenery 3 months, 1 week ago.

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  • #5274126 Report Abuse
    MDgreenery
    MDgreenery
    Participant

    CAUTION: This is an unpleasant topic to be sure.

    Not long ago we had a couple of nesting Mourning Doves in one of our balcony flower pots. I watched the parent doves sit on that nest w/o moving a muscle for what seemed like hours on end, for 2 weeks? I’m guessing that is part of their defense against predators but I wondered how they could sit so still even though they where probably being bitten by many bugs?

    Then when the parent doves finally decided that the baby birds needed to try flying, they stopped coming in as much to attend to the babies & fed them less often. But it was clear that the baby birds were quite uncomfortable at that point; the parent  doves pretty much stopped cleaning the nest…not sure if they ever actually started…but that’s another topic.

    You can imagine how yucky the nest eventually got & all the bugs it attracted b/c of the warmth of the birds & such. The baby birds were constantly picking at themselves (a couple of times it looked as though they cleaned off the bugs from one another?).

    So…if any of the expert B&B Bird Writer’s read this, how is it that the baby birds can survive say more than one mosquito bite? Judging from the amount of blood one bite from a mosquito takes from me, I cannot imagine how the baby birds could afford to lose so much blood & still survive?


    #5274133 Report Abuse
    CatsBirds
    CatsBirds
    Participant

    You know I have no idea how the baby’s survive at all.  The are so defenseless and  bugs seem to be in their nests and all around them.  I notice when I clean out bird houses that mites are a big thing in them.  As for mosquito bites.. I have no idea.  But somehow they do survive.


    Sharon, Catsbirds, Community Team Member
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    #5274567 Report Abuse
    MDgreenery
    MDgreenery
    Participant

    Thanks Sharon. I hope to read/learn more about this topic in the future. I’ve read that adult birds have natural oil on their feathers & I suppose that helps a bit with bug protection? But I wonder how long it takes baby birds to produce their own oils?

    We have an area of pure sand here & I often see the baby birds hang out in it as a child would a sandbox. But lately I seem to be catching the animals in a sand bath ritual? It takes me by surprise each time I see this; they almost seem to bury themselves in the sand & squirm back & fourth as if they are putting out a fire.

     

     

     


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