Today is the nestlings' 15th day in the nest (robins usually fledge between 12-14 days), but yesterday, day 14, was really cold, 37˚ in the morning and never got above 59 - with rain. Smart to stay put. In general, these nestlings have not seemed as restless as last year's brood.
|Mama Robin with all four nestlings - fledge is tomorrow!|
Although, there was some jostling in the overcrowded nest on pre-fledge day!
The blurry one (it was wiggling and I was using a handheld iPhone over my head!) with the wavy gape was the first to go.
Fledgling #1 left the nest at 6:34 AM: Like last year's birds, it was yelling all the way! (“Mom. Dad, I’m flying!!”)
It was a very sudden departure, none of the wing flapping that we saw last year. Fledgling #1 was sitting outside of the nest, while the other three were hunkered down with their beaks on the edge of the nest (“No way I'm going!“).
|Wavy-beak outside of the nest, sitting very quietly just before he flew|
Last year's first to fledge had quite a bit of bravado about it and then when it flew, it glided to the ground. This one seemed more confident and collected, and when it took off, it was flying, not gliding! It went straight out under the porch roof and then up to a branch on the hemlock, but it didn’t land (perhaps thinking, “Yikes! I don’t know how land!“). Instead of landing, it glide it down into the rhododendrons, with an adult following close behind.
No adults are feeding the remaining three birds and they currently show no sign or interest in leaving. It has been 45 minutes since #1 left and we haven't seen the parents at the nest at all.
#2 starts to get ready to go:
|#2 getting ready!|
6:23AM, #2 leaves the nest and fledges :
Mama came and fed the other two, not feeding the one on the right (below), who was about to leave the nest.
Right after mama flew off the nest, #2 followed her.
This one flew over Linda’s car and to a branch in a pine tree! Mama came and joined the fledgling on the branch, encouraging it to fly down to the ground. Both adult and fledgling hopped around the ground, with the adult leading the fledgling somewhere to safety.
The other two nestlings, having been fed and their fecal sacks taken, hunkered back down into the nest.
As of 10AM, they remaining two were content to stay put although one was showing some interest in departure.
The other nestling is the lump of feathers in the nest (right)! For a long time, I thought the one standing was the last bird in the nest!
It is now 11:45AM and there are still two birds in the nest. More later...