Click here to play                                                Read by Matthew

Welcome to this week's Chatterbox report. Great to see so much activity in the bird boxes over the past 7 days. So this week we shall be finding out how birds keep their precious eggs safe from predators. Some birds make their nests in crazy places! Did you know? 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.

The 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!

Woodland Detectives - Nest building challenge!

There 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!

Video - Head for heights - Heron in the Treetops

The 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:

Mallard sitting on her nest (Top Left)

Heron (Middle)   Young cuckoo being fed (Bottom Left)