7/3 Fledglings



Life is exciting for all young animals – so much to learn, so very fast. Baby songbirds are on a particularly quick timeline; pop out of the nest, learn to fly and feed yourself, or be food for someone else. Bird populations are at their zenith this time of year, but will soon to be whittled down by other hungry mouths. This young House Wren seems to be thriving as it masters the art of staying alive.


I met up with the whole House Wren family on the trail just below the Louisville Nature Center. Although wren habitat is good throughout much of the forest, this spot was particularly sweet. A spring on one side of the trail, a brushy deer exclosure on the other, and wren-friendly dense tangles of smilax and grapevine.

wren family hanging out in a deer exclusion structure.

If you don’t have a family of House Wrens in your backyard yet, just make a brushpile and they will come.      http://content.yardmap.org/learn/brushpiles/


Another young member of the family; juvenile House Wrens are very nondescript with muted brown plumage and a speckled breast.



In a wren family group, someone is always singing or fussing. If you assume it’s the male doing all the singing, you’d be mistaken. Female House Wrens sing during the egg laying phase of nesting to defend their nest from other wrens in particular (many wren species will destroy eggs in nearby nests). Females that sing more vigorously apparently have better nesting success, according to this recent study.



Another fledgling from the same area, looking a bit nervous in its first encounters with life out of the nest cavity.


Secure in the presence of its parent, this juvenile Red-bellied Woodpecker is no doubt begging to be fed.


One of the hungry mouths always watching for baby birds and unwary fledglings…


This five foot Black Rat Snake looks to be very well fed. I actually stepped on it (a first) in dense undergrowth, and felt it move under my foot. It was a bit sluggish; and judging by the dull look of its eyes, was likely preparing to molt.


Though baby deer don’t count as fledglings, they’re babies nonetheless so get to be part of this post. “Big Mama” the old doe has another set of twins hungrily pulling on her teats. I was lucky to be there at mealtime the other day, and having gone through this with my own children, I could certainly relate!










12 thoughts on “7/3 Fledglings

  1. debbie utz

    We have a hawk mom and “baby”, lots of noise/encouragement, and hanging out by my fish pond. Have been watching hummingbirds, no nest and of course a nest of robins out my front window. I don’t see as much as you tho!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Scott Woodward

    I have a bird house hanging off my porch that is home to wrens every year and they are a hoot with there big mouths, gram for gram they are the biggest egos around. Only one year did I see the fledglings leave the nest with a poor imitation of flying. Just paratroopers baling out of a plane, one right after another, flapping for all they were worth. They went only a few yards, landing on anything handy, then with encouragement from mom and dad, made it to the tree line and their new life.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. tonytomeo

    There is a species known as house wren here because it lives under shaded roof tiles that are missing their end tiles. Many tile roofs are outfitted with those little semicircular end tiles to keep them out. When I lived in town, a pair raised a family in a potted bromeliad in my shower. By the time I realized they were there, they had an egg in their nest, so could not be evicted. I do not know if they are actually wrens, but that is what we know them as. They did not look like yours.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jim Sky

    Its fun to hear the reports of others.I hope people keep doing that here.
    So far we have a nesting Towhee pair but I have not seen their offspring, I saw the fledgling of our Red Bellied Woodpecker pair today. The robins right outside our window fledged weeks ago. Yesterday I saw a fledgling Downy Woodpecker chasing around a parent. I see lots of cowbirds and wonder how they are affecting things.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. oneforestfragment

      Yes, I had hoped this blog would be a kind of forum for sharing. I’ve seen a couple cowbird babies this spring in the preserve; one was parented by Song Sparrows and the other was with Summer Tanagers.


  5. Deany C.

    This year we had a family of Cardinals (nest was tangle of cable under the gutters, Sparrows (birdhouse), Chickadees (birdhouse) and Carolina wren (nest in watering can). Success with all the young making it out on their own except for the Wren. Something must have chased the mother off because she did not return and the eggs did not hatch. I had hoped she would return, but she never did. Other young that is introduced to our bird feeders and hummingbird nectar, Red-bellied woodpecker, Hairy woodpecker and Downy woodpecker. We also have young blue jays and hawks. The blue jays and hawks are very noisy when calling out to be fed.

    Seen my first hummingbird moth for this year and starting to see different butterflies appear. I am so excited! Also seeing damsel and dragonflies too!


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