Nest March 22, 2010 @ 2:40 PM
Dear 3rd Grade Class ar Sants. Peter and Paul School viewing from Waterloo, IL.,
The eggs take approximately 28-35 days to hatch. The first egg was laid on March 4th, the second was laid on March 7th and the third was laid on March 10th. So the eggs are now 18 days old, 15 days old and 12 days old respectively. This means that the first egg should hatch towards the end of the first week in April with the others following over the course of the next week or so. However, it is not an exact science---it can take longer. The young will typically take their first flights about 45 days after hatching so the birds should take to the air sometime in late May. Last year the first nestling left the nest on June 1st.
The picture above was taken on Sunday afternoon while the parents were switching places. Both parents took turns incubating thoughout the afternoon. If you look closely you can see that the nest is full of garbafe. The plastic bag that was there a week ago is falling apart but is still visible on the left side of the nest. There is also a long strip of rubber. Last year she has a bicycle innertube in the nest as well as a small mirror encased in plastic. In fact a large percentage of the material in the nest was human garbage of varous sorts.
Close-up of garbage in nest--2009