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Sunday, June 3, 2012

Baby Mockingbirds!

Trees are not the only things that grow in Brooklyn. Two mockingbird chicks are sitting comfortably in a nest near my home. (The second chick is sleeping behind and under this one.) Click to enlarge.

The parents are foraging nearby. The juneberry in this mockingbird's beak is on its way to the nest. I watched as it was delivered; both chicks jumped up to beg, flapping their wings and squeaking loudly. Mockingbirds eat mainly fruit and invertebrates like insects, spiders, and worms.

Mockingbird chicks spend about 12 days in the nest. I'll keep an eye on these as they learn to fly. They are already growing flight feathers. The lessons will start soon.

This protective parent was glad to see me go!

8 comments:

  1. Hi Julie...Mockingbird chicks so darn cute...great to see there are not just trees in Brooklyn ; }
    Grace

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    1. Grace -- yes the are :-). One of them hopped out of the nest yesterday to a nearby branch. I hope he got back in before it started raining. Can't wait to get home from work to stop by and see how they are doing.

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  2. I just stumbled across your blog via Kelly Brenner's Metro Field Guide and your house centipede article. What a wonderful piece! Thank you for sharing.

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  3. Hi Christy -- Thanks! I'm glad you found your way here :-) Julie

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    1. Hi Julie,
      Where in Brooklyn are you? I just got woken up, for the third morning in a row, by what I'm assuming is a mockingbird. I'm on the corner of East 8th and Church, in the kensington area.

      Happy bird watching and listening,
      Adam L

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    2. Adam -- Brooklyn Heights, so we are hearing different mockingbirds. I am happy to say that there are a lot of them living among us. Julie

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  4. We have a mockingbird nest in a small tree in front of our window. We noticed the eggs hatched but not sure exactly when. The babies are fuzzy and looking like they are going to jump from the nest. When they do this, how long before they will move to the ground (fledgling stage)? We are worried bc we have a cat. Trying to keep her inside but she is dying to go out.

    Thanks,

    Jennifer

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    Replies
    1. The babies usually leave the nest when they are 10-12 days old. After that it can take a week for them to fly. It's best not to let the cat outside while there are defenseless chicks in the area. I can get my cats to ignore the lure of the outdoors by playing chase the feathers-on-a-stick toy until they fall over panting.

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