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Thursday, May 24, 2007

How To Photograph a Robin's Nest

Several people have commented asking how I am able to take pictures of the baby robins that I've posted a few times. I'll attempt to provide some step-by-step instructions here.

First, plant a crabapple tree like this one.
This is Malus 'Guinevere', one of the first ornamental trees I planted 10 years ago.

Let the tree grow for a few years until it has this nice, natural "nest platform" formed where the main branches were grafted on to a standard. This platform is about four and half feet from the ground.
Then wait for a robin to find this perfect nesting platform and build a nest. Wait, wait, wait.

Once there's a nest, to get the picture, you crouch down to get under the tree branches, then carefully raise yourself up between the branches. This part is kind of tricky because if you mis-judge where a branch is above you, you can hit your head on it

Then, with camera in hand, raise your arms up above the nest and snap some pictures.

This is how the babies look tonight, catching a few rays of the early evening sun.
You need to be kind of quick about the process because the whole time you are taking the pictures, Mama Robin is perched nearby squawking and flapping her wings to try to scare you away.

I don't think it will be too much longer before these birdies leave this nest and fly off to start their own families next spring.

That's why I went ahead and picked these strawberries this evening. They are a little undersized because of the lack of rain, and I might have left them another day to ripen just a bit more. But then I might have lost them to the birds and bunnies.
This way, they were mine, all mine! And good, too! Just a little tart, yet a little sweet, and perfect because they came from my own garden.

15 comments:

Carolyn gail said...

They look so yummy, Carol. Really, what could be more perfect than your very own strawberries ?

Curtis said...

Something that has been homegrown always taste better than store bought. They look yummy.

I bet the mama robin was not happy until she checked to make sure her yonguns were okay.

smilnsigh said...

Yeaaaaaaa! You got yourself some of those strawberries!! :-)

Mari-Nanci

Connie said...

Thank you for your comments on my blog! I enjoyed reading about your robin's nest. Last year one made a nest in the honeysuckle right near our front door. Each time I opened the door, it would startle Mama Robin and then she would startle me by quickly flying away. She was back this year to reclaim the nesting spot, but I discouraged her and she found a home elsewhere. :-)

anna maria said...

"Your" baby birds are so cute. I would surely be the one to bash my head under the branch!

LostRoses said...

See, Carol, with good advice like that who wouldn't want to have you as a neighbor? Congratulations on your award which I missed while I was away. And you also offered me the use of your lawnmower (if I didn't live 1,000 miles away) which also qualifies you as the blogger I'd most like to have as a neighbor!

Congratulations on beating the birds to the strawberries.

OldRoses said...

mmmmmmm . . . those strawberries look so good. I've been enjoying your pictures of the baby robins so much. Thanks for braving the wrath of Mama robin.

Layanee said...

Okay, I have one brand new crabapple and one that is one year old. In about eight years I should have bird babies! Maybe sooner! Nice post. I think you are right, they will be out of there pretty soon.

Biby Cletus said...

Cool blog, i just randomly surfed in, but it sure was worth my time, will be back

Deep Regards from the other side of the Moon

Biby Cletus

Yolanda Elizabet said...

My apple tree has to grow a bit more before a robin or other birdie could nest in it. Mmmmmm strawberries and from your own garden too so they taste the bestest ;-) of all.

eleanor said...

Does Jake ever bother the baby birds or does he even know they're there? I hope not, so don't tell him.

RUTH said...

Great looking strawberries. In case you'd like to see them there are some baby robins being fed on Abe Lincolns blog...
HERE

"Early Bird" said...

You are too cute! When I was doing my faeri hideout search...I had to bend down Under some branches...ouchy...oh to be 5 years old again...
:)

"Early Bird" said...

I have a story blog if you are interested...I wrote one about strawberry pickin'!
http://pinkmagnoliamemories.blogspot.com/2007/04/my-fifth-story.html

Christa said...

Carol,
Congrats on your strawberry harvest! Enjoy every last one of them - YUM!