Thursday, April 14, 2005

Pygmy Nuthatch Box-Nesting

Click on photo to enlarge
For the 3rd year in a row a pair of Pygmy Nuthatches are nesting in this box I hollowed out from a piece of firewood.
I'm quite pleased to have them nesting here as my research into Sitta pygmaea reveals these 3 3/4" to 4 1/2" nuthatches rarely use boxes, preferring to dig their own cavity in Ponderosa or Jeffrey Pines anywhere from 8 to 60 feet above ground.
The hole in this box is only 7'9" from the ground so I've lucked out all around.
Next year I'll move this box up a foot or so.
Pygmy Nuthatches live here year round and watching them walk headfirst down the trunks of pines in search of bugs is one of the simple pleasures of birdwatching in The San Bernardino Mountains.
Perhaps they nest in this 'box' because it's more natural looking than most birdhouses.
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Blogger LazyCat said...

It is natural looking, so I bet you're right. Thanks for posting the picture. That's really great. If you happen to catch one of them heading down the tree, post that too. (For those of us inner city dwellers who rarely get to see such things.)

6:31 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's a great little house, Jim! Looks like it might be your old car number plate as the roof?!
Very cute little bird and I love the name...'nuthatch'.

8:46 PM  
Blogger Jim said...


I'll try to get that shot of a nuthatch, but my camera isn't really designed for that type of shooting (no telephoto).

6:35 PM  
Blogger Jim said...

That's actually a fence sign I used for the birdhouse roof.
They are metal like a license plate but they came off old fences.
I've been collecting them for 30 years and have several hundred of them.
I also use old car license plates on my birdhouses and have the personalized plate off the first new car I ever bought back in 1980 as the roof of a Violet Green Swallow House.
The plate reads "Ol Smaug", Smaug being the fire-breathing dragon from the original Hobbit book by Tolkien.

6:42 PM  

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