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Want to see a robin nesting

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I have always been curious about birds nesting. I heard a male robin making a mating call this morning(very song like call). So far I haven't seen the robins though. Out of all the birds that I see, the one that I am most likely to see nesting is the robin. Robins are more used to people and they often nest in backyards. I don't have a yard, just a porch that is hard like concrete. It has recently rained in my area and it is going to rain again within the next few days. How can I attract a pair of robins to nest on my porch? I would imagine that leaving berries out could work to attract robins to the area. Only problem is, the squirrels would probably get to the berries before the robins even got a chance to. Speaking of squirrels, I have to somehow squirrel proof the area around the nest while the robins are nesting(if I even sucessfully get a pair to nest on my porch). Once the babies fledge, squirrels won't be as big of an issue. And I know to have something soft right by the nest in case a baby bird falls out and to lessen the impact on the fledglings.

So how can I get a pair of robins to nest on my porch? I know robin nesting season is fast approaching. And just in case one of you is a european who responds to this, the robin that I am referring to is the American Robin.

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Welcome!

It will help if you tell us what state or province you live in.  Putting out food is likely to attract bird (and squirrels), but many birds nest away from food sources.  Food sources attract other birds of multiple species.  Some of those other species may disturb the eggs and nestlings of the birds you're trying to attract, or even view the desirable eggs and babies as food themselves!

It's also a challenge to attract specific bird species to a small urban area.  Nesting birds usually want their nests to be hidden, especially the smaller birds, so predators won't find them easily.  They look for an environment with natural cover - shrubs, trees, brush piles, etc.  Unfortunately, that doesn't sound like your immediate area.

But don't be discouraged.  Some species of birds will nest almost anywhere.  If we know your area, we can name some that may show up.  If you have an overhang or place to hang a small birdhouse, I suggest getting one from Wal-mart or similar retailer.  They're inexpensive and will increase your chance of getting guests.  I wouldn't worry too much about protecting it from squirrels; they're rarely interested in birds' nests.  And I wouldn't worry too much about putting something soft under the house; baby birds don't fall out very often.  In many cases, the most disturbing thing is when people keep checking the house.

Good luck!

 

Edited by Charlie Spencer

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Welcome to the site.  Keep in mind that it is VERY fascinating, fun, entertaining to go stare at a bird's nest, it can cause stress when humans go poking around too often. Some birds are semi tolerant and will just go sit in a tree and wait for you to leave but others get VERY stressed. I'm a member of a facebook group of birders in Arkansas and one of the rules is NO pictures of bird nests. They just don't want to encourage anyone to go bothering birds in that way.
I say all this simply to encourage you do keep that in mind with your plans. Find ways in which you can observe with as little disturbance as possible.
You can find a nest box that connects to your window and supposedly you can look right at them and they don't see you. You can search the internet for those... look up window bird house or something along those lines.  That type of bird house wont attract a robin though.

Robins nest in trees and on other surfaces out in the open a bit. Sometimes they'll build nests on top of light fixtures on a person's house, especially under an eave or porch roof.
If you want to encourage a robin you'll want to consider a nest shelf rather than a bird house.

Here are just the first two pages I found on them. There are LOTS more you can look at. They both give designs AND some information about them.

https://journeynorth.org/tm/robin/NestBox.html

http://www.birdwatching-bliss.com/robin-and-phoebe-bird-house-plans.html

If you can build something like that(or buy, I'm sure they're for sale as well) and find a way to mount it on the side of the house, I think you should be able to make it so a squirrel wouldn't be able to get to them so easily.
Good luck. And let us know how it turns out.

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You may regret trying to get a Robin to nest near you.  Once they start they'll find nesting spots in all sorts of spots that you might not appreciate.  I have to clean abandoned nests out of my gutters (they build them right on top of where the downspout sits, so once they stop maintaining the nest it clogs the downspout), on top of fence posts, lights, and for a 2nd year I even  have a Robin who built a nest ON TOP of the bird spikes I put up to keep them from building a nest in that spot.

 

IMGB4508.JPG

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