Great Little Parents

In Wildlife by Patrick

Each year in the fall, we make it a point on our property to clean the nesting boxes so birds can have not only a place to roost in the colder months if needed, but with the hopes that in the spring, we will have new residents building nests. Where I live, here in the Midwest, we have a very invasive species called the English Sparrow or House sparrow. These birds are actually not a sparrow at all but a weaver finch introduced to this country from Europe in the mid-1800s. They have been know to take over other birds nests and even kill chicks if given the opportunity to make the nest their own.

Knowing this, we have modified the nesting boxes with specific size entry holes to try and attract the species that are a bit more favorable. Fortune seems to have favored us this year a we have a mated pair or House Wrens that built a nest and currently have chicks. These two little birds are tireless in protecting their new home. They will mob and harass squirrels, woodpeckers and any sparrow that remotely gets near the nest.

The male wren has a beautiful song and is not shy to stretch his range, even in the early morning hours. He sweetly sings to his mate to let her know what is going on. Both the male and the female are involved in the parenting taking turns to bring breakfast, lunch and dinner back to 4 hungry little chicks.


Incredible as this is to witness, it is over very quickly. From the time the nestlings hatch, until the fledge, it is only about a two week window. The chicks are getting ready to leave the nest as I type this and once gone, they will not return as they seek to make it on their own. Hopefully with all that their parents taught them, they in turn will become good little parents.

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