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Did we kill the robin chicks?


We had noticed some robins darting around the garden a lot and spotted them going into the dry stone wall.

My husband mowed the lawn to the wall and then a little later I went for a nosey. I didn't touch, just eyeballed from about 1-2 ft away, and could see two or more chicks. I threw out some live food onto the lawn.

The next day, no robins darting around. I went to have a nosey again and found a massacre. One of the chicks had been ripped to pieces and then oddly the other chick was untouched but dead, seemingly abandoned.

They were quite well feathered so had been there a little while but within 24 hours of us noticing them, they were gone.

Did we do something wrong? We're assuming rats but don't know if the rats or abandonment came first.

I emptied the nest, will the same one be reused this year?

Last edited: 02 May 2017 13:59:56


  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,874

    Lots of nests get raided, it's part of nature. Everything has to live. Can't see that anything you did could have affected it. Could a cat get a paw in?

  • lb191lb191 Posts: 80

    All the bits were still within the nest and i don't think a cat could have got its head in.

    Yeah I know natures cruel sometimes but it just seemed like unfortunate timing and if we'd somehow put a target in their back we'd rather not do it again.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,269

    The fact that you noticed a lot of activity the day before may mean that other chicks had fledged successfully ... the two left behind might just not have been fit and strong enough and got left behind.  Something found one of them ... stoat, weasel, rat, magpie  ......... ???  

    Just part of nature .......... something's babies got fed.  

    However, if some predator knows there's a nest in the area, it's not really a good idea for the parents to re-use that nest ......... hopefully they'll build another .......... there's plenty of time.  'Our' male robin seems to be supporting two females and their nests .... shock, horror!  adultery in the suburbs!!! imageimage

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • image Dove!

    Our massive jasmine was home to a robins' nest, last year. They had a brood of 4 and it took flipping ages for them to fledgling their way around the garden, before they finally flew away.

    T'was a tense and thoroughly nervewracking couple of days, I can tell you, with me and my family on magpie and cat watch! We left out an old roof tile for them to shelter under too, at night.

    I've seen so many magpies raid the nests in trees, that I wanted to help these sweeties have a better chance! I know it's nature, but I'm a city woos image

    I didn't feed them though - parents did that brilliantly, and stayed within range, swooping down to feed them all through the day.

    I left the nest and they reused it this year!

    Lovely birds and a lovely thing for my little girl to witness.

    Ib191, I doubt you contributed to their deaths! They probably fell out of the nests poor things, 

    Last edited: 02 May 2017 17:51:14

  •  Can somebody help me please I have 3 baby robins and they were all okay yesterday because the mum and dad were flying in and out and this morning I found all three away from the nest on my patio what could’ve caused this they were dead the nest was on the wall an ornamental small watering can 
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 82,269
    Cats, rats, weasels, magpies, jays, crows, jackdaws, even grass snakes ... the list is endless ... 

    Just part of nature, red in tooth and claw ...

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 11,391
    Yes, a magpie raided a blackbird nest here yesterday and ate the eggs. :'(
    A lot of fledglings of some species have also suffered from the 48h of rain many of us had.  :'(:'(
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
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