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Our twelve Blue tits are doing well and I think all will survive despite two being quite a bit smaller than their siblings.  In the past we’ve noticed that they fledge over two days and I think the two or three little ones get fattened up for an extra day before leaving the nest.  They are SO cute!  Their eyes have now opened, and most of their feathers are in place.  They preen themselves and are beginning to stretch their wings.  They make such a racket I’ve had to turn the sound down on my TV link.  Mr and Mrs BT work from 6am to gone 9pm bringing in those caterpillars.  They are such wonderful parents – a perfect example of co-parenting!

Mrs Blue Tit has been incubating the eggs properly for the past thirteen days now and I think they’ve finally got the hang of things.  I was quite worried last week as it was obvious that Mrs BT was unhappy with Mr BT’s slow progress in bringing food to her in the nest.  She was positively scolding in her behaviour.  Gone are the days of an elegant kiss to accept his courtship bug offerings.  As soon as she started to incubate, she snatched food from him, quacking and twittering loudly.  She muttered to herself in the nest, and shouted to him to get a move on!  Sometimes she would disappear for ages and the poor chap would look confused and call and eat the bug himself in the end!  Then I noticed that she started to imitate the gaping behaviour of chicks, beak opening wide and crying for food.  I think she’s doing this to give him some practice and to inject a sense of urgency into him.  It seems to have worked as he’s bringing her caterpillars very regularly now and she seems more content to stay on the nest and she’s stopped yelling at him.  Perhaps she takes the signal to incubate from the high volume of caterpillars being brought to her – the leaves are green on the trees now, which means all sorts of caterpillars are being born.  Still no sign of the Blue tits staple green Oak caterpillars though.  They must get their timing just right as it’s such a small window – only a couple of weeks.  


I think Mrs BT is a bit hot in the nest box at the moment, as she peers out every now and again and takes very short stretch and preen breaks on the bush right outside the nest.  She’s only away for a short time though and she’s turning the eggs very often.  Perhaps hatching time is very near. Can they really cope with 14 babies? 


It’s beautiful here in the woods today.  Summer is on the way!

We live in a wood in a little house in a wood and we’ve observed that the changing of the seasons is a little slower here than elsewhere.  Our Bluebells are only just beginning to make a show.


As you can imagine, with so many trees around us, the dawn chorus is deafening at this time of year! After several years of watching our bird nesting boxes around the house, we have installed a camera into a Blue tit box directly opposite my home office window. Next to my computer is a portable TV, on which I can see Mrs BT, snuggled up on her eggs. We are amazed that there are so many, she has 14 eggs – so they’ve certainly got their work cut out for them. She started incubating them properly on Saturday and Mr BT is very attentive, bringing Mrs BT regular bug snacks. I’m always in awe at nature’s timing. Around here, Blue tit feeding frenzy occurs at the same time as millions of caterpillars hatch on the woodland Oaks. If you go for a walk in the woods at this time, you’ll soon become smothered in parachuting green wrigglers! It’s a miracle how the Blue tits seem to ‘feel’ it’s about the right time for this great green hatching and start incubating the eggs and how in turn, those caterpillars know when to make an appearance, before there’s too much tanin the leaves! Apple blossom is falling like snow outside my window and the Hornbeam leaves have just burst – suddenly the woods are bright green! What a shame that I have to crack on and do some work!




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