22 Questions Answered: Helping Carolina Wrens Nest in Your Yard 

Intrigued by Carolina Wrens nesting in your yard, but facing some challenges? This post tackles the 22 most common questions homeowners face, drawing on real-life experiences and expert advice. Dive right in, or use the table of contents below to jump to specific questions.

On This Page
  1. MOVING A CAROLINA WREN NEST TO ANOTHER LOCATION
  2. Question # 1: Carolina Wrens have built a nest in a hanging flower basket. We frequently walk by and spend time near the flower basket. Should I move the hanging flower basket to avoid disturbing the birds?
  3. Question # 2: Carolina Wren built a nest in my tractor engine compartment! Mowing season is here. Can I move the nest to another nearby location 3 feet away?
  4. Question # 3: I must move a Carolina wren nest with chicks to a new location. How do I do that?
  5. Question # 4: Wren chicks hatched inside our garage, but we have to leave for vacation with the garage door closed. What can we do?
  6. Question # 5: I accidentally removed a Carolina Wren nest with eggs/babies inside. Can I save the eggs or babies?
  7. EGGS AND BABY WRENS HAVE DISAPPEARED
  8. Question # 6: Predation The eggs in the Carolina wren nest have disappeared. What predator did this?
  9. Question # 7: A wren nest was built in a hanging plant, but I'm worried about my cat. Can I move the plant to a higher or another location?
  10. Question # 8: I have cowbird chicks in a Carolina wren nest! Can I save the wren chicks?
  11. Question # 9: Baby Carolina wrens disappeared from the nest – what happened?
  12. Question # 10: All chicks disappeared from the nest a few days after hatching. What happened?
  13. Question # 11: Carolina wrens built a nest, laid eggs, and the parents disappeared; the eggs are still in the nest. What happened? 
  14. OBSERVATIONS OF NESTING CAROLINA WRENS 
  15. Question # 12: Will a Carolina Wren cover her eggs with nesting material?
  16. Question # 13: I saw Carolina Wrens feeding a giant chick! What's going on?
  17. Question # 14: How do I know when the wren chicks are about to fledge? And  How can I witness the moment?
  18. Question # 15: Carolina Wren chicks hatched, but some eggs remain in the nest. What to do?
  19. Question # 16: A baby Carolina wren is on the ground after fledging – should I help?
  20. Question #17: Carolina wren babies thrown from nest – what happened?
  21. Question # 18: Carolina Wren pair has been sitting on their eggs for several weeks. Is this normal?
  22. Question # 19: I see the adult wrens bringing food to babies. Sometimes the parents leave the nest with something white in their beak. What could that be?
  23. DISTURBANCE OF NESTING WRENS
  24. Question # 20: I discovered a wren nest in a hanging basket! Can I still water the plant?
  25. Question # 21: My kids are curious about a Carolina Wren nest we found in a hanging sports bag. Is it okay for them to peek occasionally?
  26. Question # 22: A pair of Carolina Wrens are nesting in my garage. Can I offer them food to help them?
carolina-wren-nest
Carolina wren at nest in a shoe left outside.

Question # 1: Carolina Wrens have built a nest in a hanging flower basket. We frequently walk by and spend time near the flower basket. Should I move the hanging flower basket to avoid disturbing the birds?

This answer applies to Carolina Wrens nesting between cushions on a porch, in hanging bags, or any other part of the house where people walk by or normally spend time near the nest.

Not at all, it is best to leave the wren nest exactly where it is and continue without altering your routine. If you’re concerned about causing any disturbance, avoid lingering near the nest for extended periods. 

Relocating the nest will almost certainly cause the wrens to abandon the eggs. The birds will not recognize the new location as the place where they built the nest.

While you may be concerned about disturbing the nest, Carolina Wrens are surprisingly adaptable when it comes to human activity. They likely chose the location because they felt safe nesting there despite the traffic and activity around the nest.

These birds are intelligent and observant. They’ve been watching your movements and have likely determined your presence isn’t a threat. In fact, their decision to nest near you can be seen as a sign of trust and safety. Snakes, one of the main bird nest raiders, are less likely to venture into porches, hanging plants, and sheds!

Here are some additional tips:

  • Minimize sudden movements: Try to avoid any sudden movements or loud noises near the nest, as this could startle the wrens.
  • Enjoy the sounds: The chirping you hear from the nest is a good sign – it means the chicks are developing healthily.
  • Incubation and feeding of the young: Your presence and normal activities near the nest shouldn’t disrupt this cycle, especially if you do not linger near the nest for extended periods of time. 

Question # 2: Carolina Wren built a nest in my tractor engine compartment! Mowing season is here. Can I move the nest to another nearby location 3 feet away?

This answer applies to wrens nesting under the hood of parked cars, yard equipment, and similar locations. It covers nests containing both eggs and baby wrens.

Unfortunately, moving the nest with eggs will almost certainly cause the parents to abandon them. The birds rely on visual cues and markers they have become very familiar with to locate the nest. Any relocation disrupts what they perceive as the nest location, and they may not recognize the new location.

If the nest has chicks and you must move or use the mower or vehicle

When the nest has already chicks, moving the nest is more likely to succeed. However, chicks must be at least a week to 10 days old when they are able to produce calls the parents can hear.

Move the nest to a nearby safe location. Here, the chicks’ calling will alert the parents about their location and the parents are likely to continue feeding their chicks. This recommendation has worked in the past. 

Alternatively:

  • Delay Mowing or moving the car: If possible, consider delaying mowing (using the tractor or vehicle) until the chicks have fledged (see information below).
  • A hybrid solution: Move the nest to a safe place, temporarily, use the mower or car, and park it back in the same position. Then put the nest back in the very same location keeping the orientation of the nest entrance in the same direction as it was before. The time must be short e.g., the time it would take to drop your kids at school and back or mowing a backyard.

Once the chicks have fledged:

  • You can safely remove the nest material from the tractor or vehicle.
  • Carolina Wrens often return to previous nesting sites. Consider preventive measures like blocking potential nesting spots in the engine compartment with wire mesh or deterrents during the off-season.
  • Humanely remove the nest (last resort): If delaying using the mower or car isn’t an option, you may need to remove the nest. This is a last resort, as it will disrupt the wren’s breeding cycle. 

Contact a wildlife rehabilitation center and explain the situation asking if they can raise the chicks. You may want to offer a small donation.

Here’s what you can do if you must remove the nest:

  • Remove before hatching: It’s best to remove the nest as soon as possible, before the eggs hatch.
  • Offer alternative nesting sites: To encourage wrens to nest elsewhere next year, consider putting up wren houses in suitable locations around your yard.
Carolina Wrens often nest in unusual places such as the engine of a parked tractor.

Question # 3: I must move a Carolina wren nest with chicks to a new location. How do I do that?

Although not recommended, I understand that all other options are not feasible (see above). Here’s what you can do:

Fledging age is key: Carolina wren chicks typically fledge 10-16 days after hatching. At 12 days old, they’re likely close to fledging or may have already started making short flights.

Here’s how to move the chicks (if necessary):

  1. Find a safe, close location: Locate a new spot for the nest that’s as close as possible to the original location (ideally within 10-15 feet). It should be sheltered from rain and sun and free from predators like cats.
  2. Prepare the new location: Create a platform or structure that will secure the nest in the new location.
  3. Move the chicks: On the day of your trip, gently block the entrance hole with a piece of fabric, grab the entire nest with the chicks inside, and  place them in the new location (maintain the fabric in the entrance for a few more minutes).
  4. Reunite chicks and parents: Remove the cloth and leave the area quickly. The parents should be able to find the chicks when they start calling and continue feeding them.

Important considerations:

  • Cat-free environment: The new location should be free from cats or other predators.

Question # 4: Wren chicks hatched inside our garage, but we have to leave for vacation with the garage door closed. What can we do?

This presents a difficult situation. Closing the garage for only a few days would be detrimental to the chick’s survival.

Here are some options, though none are perfect:

  • Can someone check on the nest? If possible, see if a trusted friend or neighbor can open and close the garage daily. 
  • Consider delaying your trip: If feasible, delaying your trip by a week until the chicks have fledged would be the safest option for the wrens.
  • Contact a wildlife rehabilitation center: Explain the situation and ask if they can raise the chicks. You may want to offer a small donation.

Close the garage after confirming parents are out. Don’t risk accidentally trapping them inside.

  • Consider taking the nest outside (See question # 2 above): 

Question # 5: I accidentally removed a Carolina Wren nest with eggs/babies inside. Can I save the eggs or babies?

Accidental removal or disturbance of wren nests happen all the time. Folks did not know there was a nest there prior to moving the structure that held the nest.

The quick solution is to recreate the structure holding the nest just like it was before and place the nest back. It is very important to have the nest entrance hole facing out and unblocked to allow the parents to access the interior chamber.

Oftentimes some eggs are crushed during the accident. Place the eggs that did not break back in the nest. Using a table spoon, gently pick them up and return them to the nest. 

How to prevent accidents

  • Wren nesting locations: Carolina wrens are known to nest in unusual places. Be sure to check grills, planters, and other potential nesting spots before using them in the spring and summer.

Baby Carolina Wrens.

Question # 6: Predation The eggs in the Carolina wren nest have disappeared. What predator did this?

Unfortunately, it seems a predator has found the nest. As for identifying the predator, there are several possibilities:

Snakes: If the nest appears intact but the eggs or babies are missing, it’s likely that a snake is responsible.

Squirrels, Raccoons, and Opossums: Squirrels often leave widened entrance holes when raiding wren nests. Raccoons and opossums typically dismantle the nest to access the eggs and babies.

Other bird predators include crows and blue jays, but they are less commonly found near wren nests and are therefore less likely to prey on them.

Question # 7: A wren nest was built in a hanging plant, but I’m worried about my cat. Can I move the plant to a higher or another location?

Moving the plant with the nest is not recommended. As mentioned previously, wrens rely on visual and scent cues to locate their nest, and any relocation can lead to abandonment.

Here’s how to address the cat situation:

  • Keep cat indoors: If possible, the most effective solution is to keep your cat indoors during the nesting period (around 4-6 weeks). This provides the safest environment for the wren chicks.
  • Supervised outdoor time: If keeping your cat indoors isn’t feasible, ensure close supervision whenever it’s outside. Bring the cat back in after a controlled walk or playtime.

Additional Considerations:

  • Plant relocation after fledging: Once the chicks have fledged (left the nest), you can safely move the hanging plant to a higher or another location if desired.
  • Future nesting: If cat access is a recurring concern, you may consider using wire mesh or other deterrents to block the wrens from nesting in the hanging basket during the off-season.

Question # 8: I have cowbird chicks in a Carolina wren nest! Can I save the wren chicks?

Unfortunately, once cowbird chicks have hatched, there’s little you can do to ensure the wren chicks survive. Cowbird chicks are often larger and outcompete wren chicks for food, so intervention at this stage is unlikely to succeed.

However, there are steps you can take to prevent this from happening again next year:

  • Monitor wren nests: Keep an eye on wren nests during their egg-laying period (typically spring).
  • Remove cowbird eggs: If you see cowbird eggs before the wren lays its own, carefully remove them using a teaspoon.

Question # 9: Baby Carolina wrens disappeared from the nest – what happened?

Unfortunately, it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact reason some wren chicks didn’t survive. Here are some possibilities:

  • Predation: Nests are vulnerable to predators like snakes, raccoons, squirrels, or cats.
  • Accidental fledge: Occasionally, chicks can fledge (leave the nest) prematurely, especially during hot weather.
  • Limited food: In harsh environments or when food is scarce, parents may remove chicks from the nest to focus their feeding efforts on the remaining ones, increasing their chance of survival.

Question # 10: All chicks disappeared from the nest a few days after hatching. What happened?

It is most likely that the nest was raided by a predator. Predation is a natural part of the wild bird life cycle and is unrelated to any actions you may or may not have taken.

  • How can I prevent predators from getting to the nest?
    Here are some strategies to deter predators from accessing your wren nest:
    • Baffles: Although Carolina Wrens seldom use nesting boxes placed in open spaces, you can add a predator baffle below the bird house if you have a pair nesting there. This is a metal or plastic collar sheet mounted on the pole that supports the nesting box. It makes it difficult for snakes and other predators to go past the baffle and access the bird house.

      There are other types of baffles. Look online under “Predator baffles for bluebirds”. 
    • Eliminate potential snake access to the nest location: It is likely that the wren nest was built in a hanging planter or part of the house that provides access to snakes and other predators.

      If possible, remove structures, bushes, or climbing plants that snakes and other predators can use to get to the nest. They are actually quite smart about making sure predators can’t get to the nest, but sometimes this is not enough. 

Spreading snake deterrents around the nest area isn’t generally recommended (they may be harmful to the birds or ineffective), 

Question # 11: Carolina wrens built a nest, laid eggs, and the parents disappeared; the eggs are still in the nest. What happened? 

To be completely sure that the parents are not attending the nest, it is a good idea to wait a few more days.

A likely reason for the parents’ abandoning the nest has to do with the disappearance of one member of the nesting pair. Something may have happened to the male or female including having been predated by a hawk, a cat or other predators. 

The remaining parent is unlikely to continue incubating the eggs on its own.  If they already have chicks, the remaining parent will do its best to continue feeding the babies until and after fledging. 

Another reason birds abandon their nest and eggs is that they somehow realized that nesting there entails too much risk and it is not worth investing any effort at such a location.

What you can do:

  • If you need to remove the nest, give it a week or so to be confident the nesting attempt was unsuccessful before removing the nest and eggs. 

Question # 12: Will a Carolina Wren cover her eggs with nesting material?

Yes, Carolina Wrens, like many other birds, typically cover their eggs with some nesting material when they leave the nest for short periods of time. This material helps to insulate the eggs and keep them hidden from predators. 

It is important to note that wrens do not always cover their eggs every time they leave the nest. Whether they do it or not may depend on the time they plan to spend out of the nest. 

Question # 13: I saw Carolina Wrens feeding a giant chick! What’s going on?

You’ve likely witnessed an example of brood parasitism. The large chick being fed by the Carolina Wrens is most likely a young Brown-headed Cowbird.

Here’s the story:

  • Cowbird nest parasitism: Brown-headed Cowbirds are notorious nest parasites. The female cowbird lays her eggs in the nests of other songbirds, like Carolina Wrens, leaving the unsuspecting hosts to raise the chick as their own.
  • Competitive Edge: Cowbird chicks are often larger and more aggressive than their foster siblings. They may outcompete them for food, reducing the wrens’ chances of raising their own young.

Question # 14: How do I know when the wren chicks are about to fledge? And  How can I witness the moment?

Witnessing wren chicks fledge is a remarkable experience. Here are some tips:

  • Signs of fledging: Watch for increased activity and noise coming from the nest. The chicks may flutter their wings or practice short flights from the edge of the nest. This typically happens 12-14 days after hatching.
  • Observe using a camera or from a distance: You can install a video camera and watch the action on your computer or cell phone.
    Alternatively, you can observe patiently maintaining a distance to avoid stressing the parents. You can use binoculars for a closer look.
  • The fledging process: Fledging can take several hours, with chicks leaving the nest one at a time. The parents will continue to feed them for a while even after they leave the nest.

When can I remove a Carolina nest from my planter?

Once chicks are gone: You can safely remove the nest after you’re sure the chicks have all fledged and the parents are no longer feeding them near the nest. This usually takes about 2-3 weeks after hatching.

Cleaning the plant: Once the nest is removed, you can clean any debris from the plant and resume your normal watering routine.

Question # 15: Carolina Wren chicks hatched, but some eggs remain in the nest. What to do?

It is better to let nature run its course. The unhatched eggs never developed. They do not cause any problem to the chicks and are eventually crushed by the weight of the growing chicks. The parents may take the shells out of the nest or the growing chicks press the shells to the bottom.

Question # 16: A baby Carolina wren is on the ground after fledging – should I help?

Unless the chick appears injured or is in a dangerous location, it’s best to let nature take its course. The parents will care for it and will continue to feed it as it develops its flying skills.

Young wrens often leave the nest  before they can fly well. They typically flutter their wings and make short flights as the parents continue to feed them for a couple of weeks.

Here’s what you can do:

  • Monitor the situation: Baby wrens will seek refuge in nearby bushes and won’t remain in open spaces for very long. Keep an eye on the chick to make sure it’s not in immediate danger (e.g., from a cat or dog).    
  • Minimize disturbance: Avoid lingering near the chick or the parents, as this can stress them.

Question #17: Carolina wren babies thrown from nest – what happened?

Unfortunately, without directly observing the event, it’s difficult to pinpoint the exact cause. Here are some possibilities:

One possibility is that a competing Carolina Wren pair found the nest and took the babies out of the nest as a way to claim the territory. 

Another possibility is that House Wren found the nest and took the Carolin Wren chicks out of the nest. House wrens are notorious for pecking and breaking the eggs of other birds and attacking unattended chicks in nests of other birds.

House sparrows are known to do this type of action. However, they don’t usually nest at places where Carolina wrens nest and they would not be competing for nesting sites. 

In very rare cases, a clumsy parent wren might accidentally knock a chick out of the nest. This is more likely with younger, inexperienced wrens.

Question # 18: Carolina Wren pair has been sitting on their eggs for several weeks. Is this normal?

This situation with the wren’s nest is unusual. Before, assuming that the birds have been incubating for a long time, first determine when they started to incubate the eggs.

A female wren begins laying eggs, typically one per day, with a total clutch size ranging from 4 to 6 eggs. Continuous incubation by the female does not start until the penultimate egg has been laid. It takes about a week after the first egg is laid before consistent incubation of the eggs begins. 

Carolina wren eggs typically hatch within 13-14 days. This results in about three weeks since the female wren laid the first egg of the clutch. If birds are still incubating after 4 weeks is unusual. However, the bird will realize that something is wrong with the eggs and eventually stop incubating and move on. 

  • Possible explanations:
    • Infertile eggs
    • Embryo development issues: Problems during embryo development could also prevent hatching.
    • Illness: In rare cases, the female wren might be ill and unable to properly incubate the eggs.

Question # 19: I see the adult wrens bringing food to babies. Sometimes the parents leave the nest with something white in their beak. What could that be?

That’s a fantastic observation! What you’re witnessing is a remarkable example of wren hygiene! Baby birds, including Carolina wrens, don’t eliminate waste in the nest.

The adults bring food to feed the chicks, and then they will remove the chicks’ waste products in little sacs called fecal sacs. These sacs are typically white or clear with a dark end.

By removing the fecal sacs, the parent wrens keep the nest clean. They’ll carry these sacs away from the nest and dispose of them elsewhere.

Carolina Wren fledgling.

Question # 20: I discovered a wren nest in a hanging basket! Can I still water the plant?

Yes, it’s crucial to keep watering the plant. If the plant wilts and dies, the protective cover for the nest will be lost, exposing it to potential predators. While it’s important to be mindful of disturbing the parents, watering your plant shouldn’t pose a significant problem.

Here are some tips:

  • Water carefully: When watering the plant, try to avoid directly soaking the nest. Aim the water at the base of the plant or use a watering can with a gentle spout.
  • Applying a small amount of water prevents flooding the content of the nest. You may need to water your plant more often until the babies fledge the nest.

Question # 21: My kids are curious about a Carolina Wren nest we found in a hanging sports bag. Is it okay for them to peek occasionally?

While frequent close observation can stress the parents, occasional peeks from a distance are likely okay, especially since the mother bird nested there and seems tolerant of the activity around the nest. Here are some guidelines:

  • Keep a distance: Encourage your kids to observe from a few feet away, avoiding any actions that might startle the birds.
  • Quick peeks: Limit their observation time to brief glances.
  • Respect the nest: Absolutely no touching of the basket or nest.
  • Minimize disturbance: Avoid lingering near the nest or handling the basket unnecessarily.
  • Enjoy the experience: Witnessing the bird chick development can be a wonderful experience for the whole family. Consider using binoculars for a closer look without getting too close.

Question # 22: A pair of Carolina Wrens are nesting in my garage. Can I offer them food to help them?

While wrens are primarily insectivores, they may occasionally eat some seeds or suet in winter. However, attracting them to a feeder specifically for the nesting female isn’t necessary. She’ll find the insects she needs in your yard.

  • Water: Providing a shallow dish with fresh water in the garage might be helpful, especially during hot weather. Place it in a stable location away from the nest box.
  • Nighttime closure: Closing the garage door at night is perfectly fine. The female wren will be safe and focused on incubating her eggs. Just make sure that you open the garage door every day until the babies leave the nest.
  • Fledging: Carolina wren chicks typically fledge (leave the nest) around 12-14 days after hatching. 

A baby wren jumped off the nest on its own and fell to the ground. Should I catch it and put it back in the nest?

No, leaving the baby bird alone is the best course of action. Carolina wren chicks often fledge before they can fly well. The parents will continue to care for them on the ground until they’re strong enough to fly further.

Parental care: The parents are likely around and can find the chick through calls. They’ll continue to feed it and help it develop flight skills.

Minimize dangers: You can help by minimizing dangers around the chick. If there are cats or other predators in your yard, keep them away from the area.

Some signs that the chick might actually need help:

  • Visible injuries: If the chick has obvious injuries or appears weak and lethargic, then it might need assistance.
  • No parents around: If you haven’t seen or heard the parents’ calls after several hours, and the chick seems abandoned, you might need to contact a wildlife rehabilitation center.

Final Remarks:

You’ve played an important role in helping Carolina wrens raise their young. Observing these resourceful and determined birds is a rewarding experience. Remember, a few small adjustments to your routine can make a big difference for nesting Carolina wrens in your yard.

Key Takeaways:

  • Carolina wrens are adaptable cavity nesters and may choose unique nesting locations in your yard. These include wreaths, hanging baskets, or the engine of parked vehicles!
  • While they are generally comfortable with human activity, minimizing disturbance near the nest during incubation and chick rearing is helpful.
  • The parents work tirelessly to care for their young, and their dedication to hygiene by removing fecal sacs is a fascinating example of avian parenting.
  • Once the chicks leave the nest, they’ll still be dependent on their parents for food for a few days.
  • By offering a nesting location, fresh water source (especially in hot weather), and avoiding disturbing the nest, you can create a safe space for Carolina wrens to raise their broods.

Author:

12 thoughts on “22 Questions Answered: Helping Carolina Wrens Nest in Your Yard ”

  1. On this page, there is a line of text which begins “a baby wren jumped off nest and fell …”. It is located under Q#22, but, it seems like should be it’s own Q#23.

  2. I found a Carolina Wren nest on my back porch and have watched them coming and going. I peeked a couple of days ago and there was only one egg and having read that they will lay one each day for several days, I looked again yesterday and there was still only one. I haven’t seen the mother back either for a day or so. Has the nest been abandoned and if so, is there a way to save the one egg (incubate and then feed the baby)? Thanks!

    1. Alfredo Begazo

      Hello Laurie,

      It is likely that the mother is around and it will return to complete the clutch. If she does not, it may be because the pair thought it was not a good place to nest or got spooked by something (may be a cat). I would just let nature run its course and leave the egg there. Incubating it and raise the chick would be very difficult. Also, we don’t know if the eggs is fertile.

      Good luck,
      Al

  3. We have a carolina wren nest with eggs in a flower pot on the covered porch. We must move the pot for one day due to contractor work that cannot be delayed. The least distance we can move the pot is approximately 6 feet. I am considering doing a night move when the mother is in the nest, draping a piece of fabric around the pot to keep the mother in the nest during the move. After 24 hours we can move the pot back to it’s original location. I have taken photos to be sure it will be positioned correctly. I would appreciate your thoughts and advice.

    1. Alfredo Begazo

      Hello Wendy,

      What a situation! I am assuming that you must move the nest and the scheduled work cannot wait.

      I don’t know how far into the incubation periods the eggs are. If they are still laying eggs or just completed the clutch, doing what you propose would not be a problem for the eggs. Eggs can go without incubation for some time.

      Assuming that the birds are half way into the incubation period, 24 hrs of no incubation may or may not be a problem, honestly I don’t know.

      I am not sure moving the nest at night is a good idea. I asume work will be done during the day. You’d be better off just moving the nest when workers show up and encourage them to do that part of the job as soon as possible so that hou replace the flower pot as soon as possible. They can continue working on the rest of the job and the wrens may come back and resume incubation if the nature of the work being done is not too intrusive. Moving the nest in the morning will ensure that the eggs are incubated all night and will be without incubation for a shorter period of time.

      If you move the nest at night, you would need to let the female out of the enclosure at the break of dawn or she will be terrified trapped there trying to get out. This could cause a bigger trauma. I think you should just move the pot in the morning.

      The birds may return to the nest if you put it back exactly how you found it. It is difficult to say how the parents will react.

      If things fail, I would not worry too much. Bird nests fail all the time. It is early in the season and this pair will rebuild a new nest elsewhere.

      Good Luck,

      Al

  4. Love your article. So helpful.
    A pair of Carolina wrens spent the winter in my garage. They had made a nest in the pocket of an old nail pouch. They would come in at night and we would open the garage door in the morning to let them out. I figured when spring hit they would leave and nest somewhere else. But instead, there are eggs in the pouch now. My question is, once the young fledge, do I clean out the nail pouch right away so they can roost there again if they want to? Is it possible they will have another clutch? Should I leave the nest as is?
    It brings me such joy to see them every morning. I want to do things right so they stick around. They pooped a lot in the garage but never hit the cars. Such great tenants.

    Thanks,
    NJ Wren Landlord

    1. Alfredo Begazo

      Hello Nancy,

      They generally do not use the same nest. These birds seem to like your garage and they find it to be a safe place. They are likely to nest somewhere else in your garage.

      Regarding cleaning out the nail pouch, yes, it is safe to clean it out soon after the chicks leave the nest; they do not return to the nest. This may actually encourage the parents to renest there. One reason why they don’t reuse a nest is because of parasites left in the nest. If you clean it out and remove all the old nesting material and poop, they can rebuild there. They can put together a nest in no time.

      Hope they come back to nest in your garage!
      Good Luck,
      Al

  5. Donna Robinson

    Carolina wren nest with recently laid eggs was found in my HVAC unit. I think they did this when it wasn’t running. With a warm spell now happening and the unit on, will the noise and vibration cause them to abandon the eggs?

    1. Hello Donna,

      I figure they are nesting in the side wiring. The running of the HVAC unit (noise and vibration) would not bother them. They get used to it really fast and continue incubating and feeding the young unbothered.

      Regards,
      Al.

  6. Char Holdenried

    Good morning for the runs on our front door wreath. I have apparently been abandoned by the mom there was a bad storm and I brought them into the garage with the nest. Should I feed them or place the box back outside? They are fledgling and are well feathered.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *