For several minutes on a day last week, I watched a Robin in the process of gathering material for a potential nesting site. I first spotted her (I assume it was a female, but I could be mistaken) at the edge of one of my overgrown day lily beds. She was pulling dried grasses from between the newly emerged plants. Some of the grasses, evidently, were still slightly rooted, because she would try to take off with a beak full only to be pulled back into the bed. It took her four attempts to finally pull that particular load free of the ground.
I watched in some amusement, and a great deal of sympathy, as she flew the 15 feet or so from the lily bed to the top of the large electrical breaker-box on the outside of my house, a flat site she had selected for the nest. Plant material more than twice the length of her body trailed behind her. From the looks of it (above) she was a first-time nest builder. I watched her as she nipped and tucked, but most of the grass was still trailing off the edge, and a considerable amount had already fallen onto the day lilies planted directly below the box.
I've not seen any activity there for the last couple of days and suspect that she has abandoned this particular location as being not particularly well suited to her needs. I'll leave the area alone for a week or so then remove it, but leave the stuff somewhere in the yard that will be visible to a bird interested in acquiring secondhand building material. I'll even include, at no additional cost, the green rubber band she seems to have incorporated. Do you see it?
I expect if I looked closely in the bushes and trees in my yard, I could find a few more nesting sites..
Tomorrow is also a day.