Saturday, 5 January 2013

Bird nesting boxes

Today I emptied my bird boxes ready to clean them out before replacing them in the garden ready for spring.  Last year there were lots of earwigs and wood lice in them.   The first one I opened today had no insects in it.   Then I realised why when a rather large spider came crawling out of the nest. He had been feasting well since the birds left.

 This is the larger nest where the spider had been living.  It was nice and dry and made mainly of moss and feathers.  You can see some white cotton in there which I must have dropped in the garden when sewing outside in the summer.  Also in this one there were several filter tips from cigarettes which I think maybe the window cleaner had dropped in the garden.  It is surprising what they use for nesting materials. Last year I found what seemed to be horse hair in one of them.  I think both nests this year were made by bluetits.

The second nest was quite a bit smaller and very damp.  A big colony of woodlice had taken residence in the box.  Like the other this was mainly moss and small feathers.  The rain must have managed to get into it and the inside of the box has some white waxy looking substance in it which I think must be some kind of fungus. Perhaps I will need to buy a new one for this year.  I do have a robin nest box I bought at Christmas so maybe I can put that up instead.

This is the inside of nest box. The white substance is also on the base of the box outside.  I will let it dry out and see if I can remove it .

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