Three in the oven…

We had a wonderful trip to Texas over the Fourth.  Lots of family, food, fireworks and swimming.  We returned home yesterday afternoon and the truck thermometer showed 108 degrees as we turned into the driveway.  I can only imagine how hot it must be inside the bluebird box.  Mama is in there as I type with her beak protruding from the opening.  I checked on the eggs and they look fine.  Expected hatch date is 11 July.

A one second exposure of a pyrotechnic.  I thought it portrayed what a flower painting by Picaso on drugs might look like.   No relevance to bluebirds, just cool.                                                                          

A strange thing happened in the mockingbird nest today.  I checked the nest about 11:30 and found two eggs had hatched and a third had pip marks on it.  The surprise was a fifth egg!  Smaller than the others and mottled, but not like the others.  I checked online pics of cowbird eggs since they are always around and this egg doesn’t really look like one.  While I was out in the front yard I saw a Yellow-billed Cuckoo fly to the creek, the first one I’ve ever seen in our neighborhood.  Sometimes they lay eggs in other birds’ nests.  Fortunately, I took a photo because when I checked the nest again in two hours, the egg was gone.  I assume the parents removed it. I’ve put out queries to some local birding experts to attempt to i.d. the egg.

A Yellow-billed Cuckoo.  The sighting of the one in the yard today brings my yard bird count to 138 species, the most in Oklahoma recorded on eBird.

Click on photos to enlarge.

Third Brood Summary:

  • 16 June  First sign of nest building
  • 20 June  Nest completed
  • 21 June   First egg laid
  • 23 June   Second egg laid
  • 26 June   Third egg laid
  • 28 June   Incubation began
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About lindell dillon

Lindell Dillon is retired and lives in Norman, OK. He grew up in Duncan, attended Cameron College and graduated from the University of Oklahoma. His interests include photography, nature, birding, and investing. Oklahoma Master Naturalist, alumnus Norman Police Department Citizens Academy.
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6 Responses to Three in the oven…

  1. Swampy says:

    Intruiging. I wonder if you’ll be able to find out what type of bird laid it.

  2. I wonder if the cuckoo was the culprit!

  3. lindell dillon says:

    I’m now thinking it was a runt mockingbird egg. I’m told they sometimes do this and usually on the last egg and it has no yolk. Still odd the parents removed it so soon.

    Checked the bluebird eggs this morning and they aren’t hatched yet, maybe tomorrow.

  4. lindell dillon says:

    Didn’t hatch yesterday, maybe today.

  5. lindell dillon says:

    Checked the eggs this morning and still unhatched. I’m getting a little concerned. There have been triple-digit temps every day of their incubation. Hope they hatch today.

  6. I hope the previous brood’s nestlings are doing well!

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