Monday, April 2, 2012

Very Unusual Bird Activity

Many nesting boxes hang in the trees in our backyard.  Almost all of them are used by the nuthatches, chickadees, titmice.  The White-breasted Nuthatches typically occupy this particular house since they are among our earliest nesters.

Imagine my surprise when I saw an American Goldfinch flying back and forth to the house.

You can see the bird just to the left of the box.  You may want to click on it to enlarge.

The bird flew back and forth to the nesting box carrying materials.

 A first for me!  I have never seen a goldfinch enter a birdhouse.

 Yet enter the finch did.

So what's so unusual about this bird activity?  Plenty.  In the first place goldfinches are not cavity nesters.  I have looked for information and found nothing to indicate they are.

Secondly, it is far too early here for the goldfinches to nest.  They are among our latest nesters despite their early color changes.

What prompted this unusual behavior?  I haven't a clue.  My husband thinks this bird may have survived a window strike with traumatic brain injury.

I last saw the bird flying back and forth to and from the house on Saturday.  I did not see it yesterday or today.  Perhaps one of the wiser goldfinches taught this one about the birds and bees.

I'll be sure to let you know who ultimately nests in this box.  I would wager a huge amount that it will not be a goldfinch.


Taradharma said...

hmmmm...a mystery!

Anonymous said...

Interesting behavior. I'm glad you're keeping an eye on her to see what she's up to. I love that you get White-breasted Nuthatches nesting there. We have them here, but not sure we have the right kind of nest box up for them. We were trying to attract the Western Bluebird. Did see a Mountain Chickadee checking it out, but not the nuthatch. Any nester would be fine with me!

Ms. A said...

Excellent photos! Can't wait for a followup!

Cicero Sings said...

... a mystery ... but it sure made for an interesting story!

NanaNor's said...

Hi, I wondered if our weird weather this year is impacting the golf finch? We are seeing finches and sparrows so much earlier than we normally do. I loved your photos and hope that the little bird is alright. Thanks for sharing.

George said...

This is definitely interesting behavior. It would be interesting to know what caused her to behave this way.

Janet, The Queen of Seaford said...

Wonder if the warmer spring temps are to blame for the earlier nesting? As for the cavity nesting, a mystery!

Nezzy (Cow Patty Surprise) said...

I had an Indigo Blue do the same thing a few years ago and raised a couple broods durin' the summer in that little birdhouse.

You'll have to keep us informed on the activity 'round the Finches little love nest!

God bless ya and have yourself an excellent weet sweetie!!!

Vicki Lane said...

Weird! We have wrens building nests but that is odd,indeed, for a goldfinch. Great on the wing capture!

Peruby said...

Oh, no. Even the birds are outsourcing.

Tipper said...

That is interesting!! Maybe its confused by our crazy warm weather!

(thank you so much for mentioning the asheville paper too me-I didn't even know I was in it!)

NCmountainwoman said...

Thanks for your comments, everyone. The bird gave up the idea of building in the box. Too bad, since the Research Scientist and Curator of Birds for our NC Museum of Natural Sciences was quite interested and thought we might be making history!

Busy Bee Suz said...

Well, she could be back for some history making???
Great photos!