It looks like the bluebirds’ attempt to raise a third brood this season is a bust. The eggs should have hatched on 11 July, so they are now 5 days overdue. The temperature has been over 100 degrees every day these eggs have been in the box. Egg failure is high in hot weather, so I decided to remove an egg and examine the contents. There was a yolk, but no embryo. Tested the other two and they were the same. I removed the nest so Mama won’t be inclined to stay in that hot box any longer. She has endured enough.
Mama deserves a break from this intolerable heat and so do Carolyn and I. We are leaving for Santa Fe in the morning. Really looking forward to some cooler weather and seeing some different birds. We will be there for a couple of weeks and then who knows? If it’s still triple digits here, we may move up to Colorado for a spell. I expect we will take some early morning walks on the trails at the Randall Davey Audubon Center and I’ll post some pics on my reddirtpics photoblog.
Click photos to enlarge.
The mockingbird babies are growing fast. Baby birds aren’t babies long. When I checked the nest last night, one of the four was missing. The nest is getting crowded and I’m guessing it got pushed out. I haven’t seen it on the ground, so something may have caught it. The parents would feed it if it were in the flower beds or shrubs nearby. These guys will be gone when we get home, although they will probably still be hanging around the yard as juvies.
I don’t expect the bluebirds to try another nesting in this heat, but I could return home and be surprised. Southern bluebirds sometimes raise four broods. Mama and Daddy have worked hard raising two broods this year and deserve a break. Bugs are plentiful and they won’t miss their breakfast of mealworms much, although I’m sure Daddy will be out there calling and wondering where the ‘worm man’ is.
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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
- 16 July Unhatched eggs and nest removed