Photo by M. LaBarbera. Hi, thanks for your comment and thanks for thinking of the welfare of the juncos! Photo by M. LaBarbera. Read on for more. is the top destination to find quality Wild Bird Feeders and Accessories. Three days later—the last day of that trip—we returned in hopes of banding the chicks, but unfortunately their legs were still too small: if I had banded them, the bands might have slipped down over their feet, holding them closed. I’m hoping if I keep her in for a couple of days the mother may move any that survived her attack. Nest #1 was found when, during mist netting, a junco skittered along the ground bare feet from us. I approached to flush him, and there was the nest. Photo by M. LaBarbera. My cat brought home two tiny baby birds today and your post helped me identify them as juncos. They looked to be about 5 days old as in your pictures. The chicks did not want to stay in the nest after we put them back, especially YOGA. The nest with four eggs in it that I mentioned previously is, one month later, still four eggs. I live on Vancouver Island (Western Canada) and I just wanted to thank you for this post. Change ), You are commenting using your Google account. They have only gone to get food and will return. The only things they can do are beg for food and digest. They may have completed the nest but discovered it was vulnerable to predators or unsafe in some way. (I actually think they’re adorable, but I know not everyone will agree.) RARR got very puffy, although it wasn’t cold out. I would prefer that my interfering with chicks have no consequences at all; but since their parents were feeding them there, and the chicks were entirely concealed, I think this should be fine. I’ve now spotted YAYN as well, with ALGE keeping watch on her; and I’m 90% sure that I saw three fledglings, although I couldn’t see all of their bands. I’ve also found two new nests! Photo by M. LaBarbera. She will incubate the eggs for 12-13 days, and the young Dark-Eyed Juncos will leave the nest in 9-12 days after hatching to embark on their own lives. ( Log Out /  We found nest #2 when I noticed a junco scolding a hiker’s dog in the parking lot at one of our sites. The third larger chick (right) and the runt. Change ), You are commenting using your Facebook account. Plant several dense spruce trees with branches near the ground. Note how the larger chick has more pinfeathers. This egg was definitely infertile, since clearly the others were incubated correctly. Dark-eyed Juncos breed in forests across much of North America and at elevations ranging from sea level to more than 11,000 feet. You are so lucky to hold them in your hand! By now YOGA and RARR should have fledged. We hurried to get them back into the nest so that they (and their parents) could calm down. Change ), You are commenting using your Twitter account. Momma still has to eat! “I scared her up,” my father (who generously field-assisted me on this trip) said. This means that, out of four nests, potentially two had issues with infertility—that’s high enough that you would expect it to be a selective pressure on females, to which they might respond by trying to select the most fertile mates, or by mating with multiple males. I estimate that the three larger chicks all hatched the day prior to these pictures being taken, and that the smallest one hatched on that very day. She’s declawed and only spends roughly an hour outside a day so I stupidly thought birds would be safe (this is a first for her) but it had honestly never occurred to me that they would nest on the ground. There are a couple of reasons for birds to abandon their nests. This nesting attempt has failed. “She flew up from the ground.”. They can’t stand up, or open their eyes, or keep themselves warm. If any chicks survived, it will take a while for them to get old enough to be safe; they may not leave the nest until they’re 9-14 days old, and when they do leave, they’ll still be flightless and clumsy (and vulnerable) for a while. Chicks of this age can walk and perch, so whether they’re in a nest or not doesn’t matter, as long as they’re hidden and the parents know where they are. They may have been sitting on unfertile eggs for long enough to realize they weren't going to hatch. While juncos won't use nest boxes, you may still attract Dark-eyed Juncos to nest in your backyard. The key is allowing a bit of unkempt or natural yard. Photo by M. LaBarbera. These nestlings were big enough to process, so we banded them YOGA and RARR. The eastern \"Slate-colored\"race is uniform dark gray or brownish gray depending on whether it is male or female.The western \"Oregon\" race has black (male) or gray (female)hood and brown back.The western \"Pink-sided\" race has a gray head and pinkish sides.The \"Gray-headed\" race of the southern Rockies and Sout… This nesting attempt has failed. This is a common place for Juncos to place their nests, I’ve come across a few others on the ground in tall grass in previous years. I hope that I’ll see them on the next trip! The parents have abandoned it; the eggs are cold to the touch (i.e., not being incubated). If the parents wanted them back in the nest, they would herd them back. Since I saw the female incubating over a long enough period to think that she didn’t abandon the nest before the eggs should have hatched, I suspect that the eggs were infertile. Find the chicks… (hint: look for the yellow of the bill). They had probably fledged days before. ( Log Out /  So it looks very likely that all three chicks fledged and are doing well. There were two nestlings, probably eight or nine days old, and one unhatched egg. New nestlings! The parents have abandoned it; the eggs are cold to the touch (i.e., not being incubated). (Of course my plan was to have twenty or so, but hey, I’ll take what I can get.). Unfortunately even if I catch a fledgling in that area, I won’t be sure that it is one of them.