Birding/What do I do?


We have some baby birds in what seems to be an abandoned nest underneath out pool deck. The mother is nowhere to be seen and the baby birds are covered in black bugs. I want to save them but I don't know what to do. They are not disturbed often. My dogs do not know where they are, nor do the younger kids that live with us. We've seen them when they were still eggs but completely forgot about them until they hatched again. Now they are covered in tiny bugs. What do I do? Will the mother come back? How do I save them? I do not know what kind of birds they are but we live in Missouri if that helps. There are only two baby birds and they look fairly big.

Do nothing unless you are ABSOLUTELY SURE the parents have abandoned the nest. Leaving nature to its processes is almost always the best way to go. I have no idea if the mother will come back. If they are fairly big, they may be ready to leave the nest and the mother is somewhere nearby waiting for them to jump out. She will take care of them until they can fly. If you are SURE the babies are abandoned, then call your local wildlife rehab center or official for help and advice. It is VERY difficult to raise baby birds unless you have experience.
Again, leaving everything alone is the best way to go in almost all situations like this, but thanks for your concern.


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Roger Lederer


Any and all about WILD birds - the science of ornithology. Information about birdwatching, ecology, conservation, migration, behavior, banding, rehabilitation, feeding, songs, binoculars, identification, and careers in ornithology. No questions about pet or caged birds, please.


Have a PhD and over forty years as a professional ornithologist - research, teaching, author, speaker, webmaster of . Have written thirty scientific papers, three bird field guides, a textbook in ecology four other bird books, the latest being "Beaks, Bones, and Bird Songs". Have traveled to 100 countries watching birds and have spoken to hundreds of groups about birds.

PhD in Zoology/Ornithology; Emeritus Professor of Biological Sciences; former Dean of the College of Natural Sciences at California State University, Chico

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