Sunday, March 30, 2008

Spring Nesting

With the arrival of Spring, during the early morning hours the melancholy coo of Mourning Doves can be heard intertwined with the cacophony of other resident birds. We have a host of Mourning Doves, and they have returned to their favorite nesting spots. These locations, all in various baskets on the side porch of The Rosemary House seem to provide the perfect spot for a somewhat protected nest. This first basket hangs on the porch and has provided a safe haven for nesting Doves for many years. The nest is very simple, a few twigs and tiny branches loosely placed in the basket provides just enough cushion to soften the basket and cradle the eggs. Typically, a nest will consist of 2 eggs that will incubate over 2 weeks. Mourning Doves form strong pair bonds, are prolific breeders, and will typically breed 5 or 6 times in a single year.
Last year, we noticed this basket tucked in a potting shed had become a home for a nesting Mourning Dove. You can see some of the twigs poking out of the basket. We think this must be one of the hatches from last year that fondly remembers growing up in a basket, so they found their own basket to convert into a nest.

My father astutely noticed the birds nesting in this basket this year. Tucked against the wall of the porch, mama bird is sitting on her eggs, protected from unfriendly others. The male will sit on the nest in the early morning thru late afternoon while the female will nest the remainder of the day thru the night.It will be a busy year as there will be Mourning Doves nesting in these baskets off and on throughout the spring and summer.


lemonverbenalady said...

We had a mourning dove lay her eggs on our window sill. We have ivy growing up the front of our house and there was a nook where the ivy was climbing over the windowsill and attaching on to the window. She wedged herself behind the ivy and against the window. Needless to say, we didn't use that window for a while! Love the blog. I get a daily dose of The Rosemary House and the delightful Reppert Sisters. I feel like I'm in the shop every day.

kathi said...

What a wonderful blog home you have, I'm so glad I found you. Interesting post about morning doves, I have some that come to feed so I may have to place a basket in a safe place for them to try out :).