The birds have been busy collecting material for their nests these past few weeks, there are so many great nesting places in my garden that it is hard to work out where they're setting up home.  We've added a few more bird boxes this year and I've been trying to keep an eye on each one to see if they are being used or just checked out.

If you followed my blog this time last year you may remember the great excitement when I found blue tits had made a nest in the camera box.  I loved watching each day as another egg was laid, until the clutch numbered nine.  For three weeks we watched as the devoted mum sat on her eggs, turned them regularly and covered them with down before she popped out for food when she thought her mate was taking too long.  Sadly, after three weeks of keeping her eggs warm, the female abandoned her brood, giving up hope of them hatching.  We all shed a tear for her.

We waited until January this year before cleaning out the box in preparation for this year's home building.  It was a sad, yet beautiful sight to see the perfectly formed nest,

Blue-tit-nest 

with nine tiny, speckled eggs still inside.

Blue-tits-nest-with-eggs  

All the more poignant for us as the nest was interwoven with the hair from our wonderful old dog Charlie, who passed away last August.

Blue-tit-eggs

I'll have to find something else to put out for the blue tits this year to help line their nests.  Let's hope their hard work pays off this time.

On the subject of birds, super-talented watercolour artist Geninne has created Topography of a Bird - a lovely illustration available as a postcard.

PS  If you were expecting to see the next in the series of 'Three Takes ….' here today please be assured I will return to it after the school holidays.  In the meantime, have a look at previous posts in the series of creative experiments by clicking on the pictorial link in the sidebar.
 

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