Habitats 1

Click here to play             Read by Matthew

challerbox 2

Once the birds have laid their precious eggs it is important to keep them warm and safe from predators. Some birds make their nests in crazy places! The Skylark makes its nest in the farmer's field - luckily farmers are careful nowadays when they harvest the crops. Some farmers even leave bare ground in their fields especially for the Skylarks.

mallard duckThe other way birds hide their precious nest is by camouflage. Here's a picture of a female adult Mallard sitting on her nest. What is it about their feathers that makes them almost invisible?

Birds make nest building look easy, but I wonder how people would manage? Have a look at this great activity - can you build a nest? Can you build it one-handed - remember a bird only uses its beak!

Nest building challenge

N P Grey HeronThere are many other amazing nests. For example Herons which live by ponds, rivers and streams. So where do they build a nest? Answer: At the tops of trees. Watch this super video to see how they do it!

Head for Heights – Herons in the Treetops

Reed_warbler_cuckooThe adult female Cuckoo has a very strange way of finding a nest. The female lays her egg in another bird's nest - not a Cuckoo nest but a totally different species. Amazingly the egg is the right colour for the other bird not to notice. Somehow the female Cuckoo knows which type of bird nest it must find so that the egg it lays look like they belong to the family. Cuckoos often use Dunnock or Reed warblers nests. Then when it hatches the Cuckoo chick pushes out any other eggs - or chicks and the cuckoo chick is fed by the owners of the nest!

Photographs:

Female Mallard (Top) Heron (Middle) Cuckoo/ Reed Warbler (Bottom)