Saturday, May 14, 2011

Avian Trampoline

Two years ago, all of the baby Barn Swallows fell from their nest to our porch roof. None survived. So last year, we gave our nesting visitors two helping hands. First, Wayne built a small wooden shelf to help support their mud nest high up under our eves. The second was a soft "landing pad" just in case any babies got pushed or fell from of the nest.

I used an old sheet and sewed a large pillow. Then I took some polyester fiberfill I had from an old craft project to fill it. The fiberfill dries fairly quickly and retains its loft, making it a good choice for an outdoor "avian trampoline." To help keep the fiberfill in place, I created three pouches in the pillow.

To keep it in place on the porch roof, Wayne used some strategically placed rocks. The pad has an additional benefit. At the end of the season, it can be discarded with all the droppings from the nest.

We are hopeful our Barn Swallows will return by the end of May. If they do, everything is ready for them. The old nest just needs refurbishing and the new trampoline is in place.

And by July, maybe we'll have more babies to watch like these. -- Margy

7 comments:

  1. Oh, I didn't realize they fell and died, Margy. How sad. We had two nests last year — robins and starlings. Two baby starlings fell to the concrete below and died, but Dick insists the robins fledged successfully while I was on my Eastern Canada train trip.
    — K

    Kay, Alberta, Canada
    An Unfittie's Guide to Adventurous Travel

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  2. Good luck. Let's hope for some soft landings!

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  3. I do so hope they return! They couldn't have more welcoming friends!

    My Camera Critter post is at:

    http://rnsane.blogspot.com/2011/05/camera-critters-162-new-dog-at-calhoun.html

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  4. You and Wayne are officially Bird Nerds! This is such a wonderful idea.

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  5. Thanks everyone for stopping by for Camera Critters. Wayne went back to the cabin today so I should know soon if we have any nesting birds. - Margy

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  6. I love how everyone picked birds this week! :)

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