Since I've been feeding wild birds all winter, I had no doubt some would stay to nest around the house this spring. Birds like free food. So the first item on my guy's spring to-do list was to 1) screen in the porch so nothing nested in it and 2) do something about that garden wall cabinet we inherited from our house's previous owner. You guys might remember it; it's the cabinet on top of which mourning doves nested last spring -- twice.
"We can't take it off the wall," he told me. "It's bolted through the siding, and it'll leave a big ugly hole."
"Okay," I said, "but you've got to do something about the top of the ledge to discourage those doves from nesting there again." I didn't want to spend all Spring going out every morning to look for smashed eggs or helpless fledglings writhing on the ground.
My guy did a lovely job screening in the porch, which means I won't have to worry about finding another nest of wrens in my potted plants. His solution with the cabinet outside the porch, however, was to push the two birdhouses on top of the ledge together so there was no room for nest building. I didn't think this would work, and told him that. About a week after he moved the birdhouses, something (a dove, perhaps?) worked its way between the two houses and started building a nest. I spotted the gap and the twigs and pointed them out to him:
My guy cleaned off the ledge, pushed the houses back together again, and promised me he'd keep an eye on it while I was out of town. Which he evidently forgot to do, so when I got back home from my trip, guess what I found?
She didn't build her nest between the two houses this time. She built it in front of the smaller house, right on the very edge of the ledge.
I swear, she's smirking.
This is why the first item on my to-do list for today -- after I check the dove to make sure she and her eggs are okay -- is to move our grill into the garage.