7 Interesting Facts About How Birds Nest
There's a lot more to bird nests than meets the eye.
Luke Brugger (public domain)
- Ducks lay many more eggs than songbirds. For instance, wood ducks can lay as many as 15 eggs in one nesting cycle.
- Not all birds build nests. Two that don’t are cowbirds, which lay their eggs in other birds’ nests, and screech-owls, which use cavities that other birds or critters have hollowed out.
- Ever wonder why there are so many pigeons around? They can nest up to eight times a year.
- Killdeer are fully feathered when they hatch. As soon as they dry, sometimes in as little as five minutes, they will leave the nest.
- Most young don’t stay in the nest long, but it’s a different story with larger birds like owls, hawks, and eagles. Bald eagles will stay in the nest up to 98 days!
- NestWatch is a nationwide program that enlists amateur bird-watchers to monitor nests for scientific research. Last year, volunteers monitored 984 house-wren nesting attempts. See nestwatch.org.
- Fascinated by eggs? Check out The Book of Eggs by Mark E. Hauber, which offers detailed pictures of the eggs of 600 bird species from all over the world.