Urgent advice needed - Coal Tits in nesting box

Hello!

We had coal tits nesting in a wooden bird box, the entry hole is a bit big so it's surprising they nested in there. Unfortunately we found 1 dead chick on the ground and 2 dead chicks in the nesting box, but it now seems abandoned by the parents and hopefully other fledglings. I was expecting to find egg shells, I found none.

The chicks inside the box were covered in maggots and ants so I cleared it out and put the box back, but reading various pages I discovered that this may have been a bad idea. Should I pick the maggots out of the nesting material and put the nesting material back in the box? Is it likely that any of the coal tits would return to the box?

Doing the research, we're either going to have to modify this nest box to make the entry hole smaller or buy a new one altogether.

Thanks in advance

  • Eggs shells aren't usually left inside nests, unless the adults don't get chance to clear them (i.e. die). If you are getting ants in the box, you need to move it somewhere else. As you know the nest isn't active, and if you do move it, you might as well clear the contents out. Not sure if modifying the hole is the best option. Hard to know without seeing the box. But, coal tits won't have a second go in that box this year imo.