He clearly preferred one of the smaller boxes, and built his most elaborate nest in it. When females showed up to inspect the nests, he led them over and over again to his favorite, as if arguing its attributes.
The activity around the wren boxes was so entertaining that I almost missed a developing cardinal nest in the overhanging honeysuckle.
The wren watched the cardinals’ progress with obvious interest, but didn’t seem to object.
The cardinals quickly completed their nest, and soon there were eggs.
When the eggs hatched, the house wren’s interest in the honeysuckle nest increased alarmingly. (More than one source reports that house wrens sometimes destroy nearby nests, pecking holes in eggs and even killing nestlings.)
But a closer look revealed that the wren wasn’t planning to harm the nest.
He was feeding the brood.
And so were the cardinals.
I’m confused, but the cardinals, the wren, and the nestlings seem content.
The cardinals bring seeds, while the wren scours the yard for insects.
And the nestlings greet either meal with enthusiasm.
I wonder if this kind of behavior is common. Have the yard’s birds been feeding each other all along?
I suppose “wonder” is the key word here, as it usually is in the yard.