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Elizabeth and Malcolm's Bluetit Pages
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babies all died

 
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suesav



Joined: 17 May 2012
Posts: 2

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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 9:05 am    Post subject: babies all died Reply with quote

My healthy 10 chicks have gradually died one by one, the last this morning was fully feathered and looked ready to leave the nest. My neighbours have exactly the same problem and lost all their's as well. Is there a disease about?
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minijoan



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 297
Location: Northampton

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PostPosted: Thu May 17, 2012 2:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Sue

How very sad to loose you chicks one by one, it does make you wonder if it could be down to disease rather than cold or lack of the correct food.

I suppose the only ones who could answer your question would be the RSPB and even they would have to do a lot of investigating.

In all probability this happens every few years when conditions are not quite right but it is only because there are more camera boxes in use, that we know it is happening.

Lets hope next year we have a wonderful warm spring and the BT's flourish.

From a VERY sad Crying or Very sad Joan
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Strixaluco



Joined: 24 Mar 2005
Posts: 5464
Location: Mayford, Sy

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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 11:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I rang the BTO yesterday morning, hoping to speak to one of the people involved with their Nest Box Challenge, but I'm still waiting for the callback. I also sent an email, so I'm just hoping I'll hear something on Monday. My guess is that there's probably a shortage of suitable food - this is what happened in 2007, when all the chicks in two of our boxes died within a day or two of hatching.
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Elizabeth
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minijoan



Joined: 06 Mar 2011
Posts: 297
Location: Northampton

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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 11:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you Elizabeth for making enquiries as to the cause of so many chicks perishing this year.

I think it must be down to lack of natural food due to the exceptionally cold and wet April/May, but it will be very interesting to see if they confirm this.

I am now quite pleased my BT's haven't used my box this year as I would have been very upset to witness what has been happening in other boxes.

Joan
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suesav



Joined: 17 May 2012
Posts: 2

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PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2012 9:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you for your input. Still a mystery as they were almost ready to go. The parents were bringing in insects but obviously not the necessary bugs they needed.
We have cleaned out all the little bodies, should we just leave it now and is there a chance of another brood this year?
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Strixaluco



Joined: 24 Mar 2005
Posts: 5464
Location: Mayford, Sy

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PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2012 5:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Strixaluco wrote:
I rang the BTO yesterday morning, hoping to speak to one of the people involved with their Nest Box Challenge, but I'm still waiting for the callback. I also sent an email, so I'm just hoping I'll hear something on Monday. My guess is that there's probably a shortage of suitable food - this is what happened in 2007, when all the chicks in two of our boxes died within a day or two of hatching.

I received an email today - and an apology for the delay, as the person who would have heard about such problems was in Cheshire.

"With both Nest Box Challenge and the Nest Record Scheme we are getting more reports than usual of Blue Tit and Great Tit nests failing at all stages. Lots of nests were built or half-built early in the season but then left until a a week or so ago. Other nests have been abandoned on eggs and still others abandoned at various stages of chick growth. One result of this is that there are now tit nests at all stages, as some repeat and others start late; not the synchronous nesting we're used to seeing. Availability of the correct food could well be a reason for failures--I don't know what this season has done to the timing of peak caterpillar abundance--but also the rain will have made foraging difficult for adults and the low temperatures may even have made females spend longer brooding, further reducing foraging time".

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Elizabeth
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