So where do birds sleep? Presumably in trees. Had the small bird been afraid to stay in the tree, even with an adult? Had it tried to get back into the nest, and either be unable to do so, or possibly prevented from doing so by its parents?  

I honestly have no idea whether it was a smart idea or a foolish one, but Baby Robin had created its own sleeping spot on the narrow ledge next to the window above our door, not far from the nest. 

When I came down the stairs on the morning of May 29th, my eyes, from habit, began to look up, preparing to check the nest for the mother bird. But something stopped me.

On the narrow ledge of the window above the door was a dark silhouette.

I ran and got my stool from the kitchen so I could get a closer look.

Yes, it was the baby bird.

Wondering if the adults had left their baby behind, I looked around.

And, of course, there was Mama Robin, sitting on the post she had flown to so many times after we'd disturbed her—the same post from which she'd often looked me in the eye as if daring me to try something.

She was keeping watch, swivelling her head all around, making sure nothing was going to bother her baby.

I looked toward the trees. Yes, Papa Robin was still in the area, too.

Over the next hour or so, Baby Robin stayed on the window ledge, moving a few inches now and then.

At one point that morning, I saw Mama Robin in the nest.

And Mama and Baby on the bannister again. 

I love this picture of the two of them! Mama Robin looks so fierce! And Baby Robin so trusting.

But I got busy, and didn't look out front again until later in the day.

I didn't see them. They were likely in a nearby tree, but no longer making the nest or our front steps their home base.  

I really don't know if there was a second baby in the nest that I hadn't seen, and it had flown away with them that day or not.

We never saw any broken eggshells. Apparently robins are known for keeping the area around their nest clean so predators don't see evidence of their continued presence. 

The next morning, May 30th, there was no baby robin on the ledge, and no sign of any robins in the area.

A few days later, I was in our back lane and I thought I caught a glimpse of a young robin near our neighbour's house.

I also saw one who looked a lot like the mother grabbing a raspberry from a bush at another neighbour's house. I tried to get a picture but it flew away.

A week passed. I decided they must have moved to a new area, perhaps to join other robins.

We had a lot going on, so a couple more weeks passed, but eventually we had time to make plans to get the railing replaced and redo our front yard. We started the process for someone to come and start the upgrade.

I discovered I had so many pictures of robins that they needed their own folder.

I wrote a blog about the robins, and prepared to move on.

But no one thought to take down the old nest...

*All photos copyright N. J. Lindquist, 2120

Read Part 4

April 9, 2020

About the author 

N. J. Lindquist

N. J. Lindquist is the award-winning author of books, articles, short stories, and blog posts. She also edits and publishes the "Hot Apple Cider" anthologies. A former high school teacher, N. J. co-founded The Word Guild and teaches workshops for writers as well as speaking on various topics including creativity and leadership.

    • It’s on my to-do list right after getting some new plants in the ground, formatting my middle grade fantasy for beta readers, and writing next week’s memoir. :)

      NJ

  • I loved this 3 part robin saga and am eagerly awaiting part 4! We just bought a house and we have a robin’s nest with 2 eggs by our front door too! I also feel so guilty about disturbing the family but I also want to be on our new porch!!

  • We had swallows under our eaves at our old home for about 4 years. If the nest was left alone, they came back. If it was knocked down, they either picked a new spot or didn’t return. We had to be aggressive about knocking down the nests or they took over the beam. They finally left when we repainted just before selling our home.

  • Great story I really enjoyed reading it . I’ve got to Robin Nest Right next to each other and she’s been in both. And they’re right outside my back door that I use all the time . She let me look at her for a few minutes one time and the next time I went out to look she was in the other Nest. Not quite sure what she’s doing but she doesn’t seem to like it when I try to go out and look at her . She flies away . I just hope I don’t scare her away so she doesn’t have her babies in her nest . I have birds every year in bird Nest that were built but I’ve never had Robbins so this is really interesting to me .

  • Thanks for your very informative post! We have robins that have set up shop by building a nest on the bottom of the ledge surrounding the pane of glass above our front door. So, through the glass, we have witnessed the entire nest-building process, from messy collection of building materials (many of which landed on our front porch just outside the door) to compaction and finally, consolidation into a nest. I think we will remove it after the first crop of fledglings leaves! Meanwhile, it’s a fascinating show.

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