Great Tit chicks abandoned in nest box

  • Well done on posting pics Matt, such dear little things but looking very lively! So pleased that Ray could help, have read before that he advises against cat food for chicks!
    Good luck, please let us know how things go!

     

     2013 photos & vids here

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  • Well done Matt, on taking on this challenge with Blut Tit babies. Good that you were able to get sound advice from Ray, hope all goes well for you and the family. Lots of long hours and lack of sleep. Keep us posted.

    Beauty is in the eye of the beholder.

  • I’m afraid I’m in the same situation. A nest box full of frantically calling Great Tit chicks and no sign of the parents.

    I have thought of taking the box down and trying to feed them but I would have to leave them on their own to go to work. At the same time I just don’t know if I’ve got the strength to allow nature to take it’s course.

  • Hi Susan sorry to hear that, its an awful situation to be in. What did you end up doing?

    I thought the little chicks in my box were doing well, but unfortunately last night when I went in 2 of them had died and the other 2 are looking a bit lethargic, taking food still but looking like they just want to sleep. I think I may have done more harm than good in what I was feeding them at first, I guess we just can't do anywhere near as good a job as there parents
  • When I spoke to Ray from the wildlife rescue centre who was recommended earlier on the page he said you must not try and give them liquid and they will get the liquid they need from the maggots, so I'm just putting my faith in that advice the same as Iam with the advice of giving them maggots. I've looked at his Facebook page and he seems to specialise in birds and looks like he knows what he's talking about when it comes to hand rearing chicks
  • Hi Matt,

    This morning I tracked down a wildlife hospital which could take them and then mounted a rescue attempt after borrowing a stepladder and locating a screwdriver so I could get into the nest box via the side panel.  There were two living chicks who were fortunately still quite lively and I think were almost ready to fledge one actually attempted to fly and instead took a 2 metre flutter onto the grass below. I made a substitute "nest" for them out of cardboard box with an old towel inside

    Sadly there were at least 3 dead chicks in the nest at least two of whom I think might have been dead for longer than a day or so since they are sort of buried in the nest cup and looked sort of squashed. Perhaps one of the adults tried to brood them after they died? One of the dead chicks was on the periphery of the nest and looked just like it's living siblings and I feel guilt ridden for not having tried harder yesterday since perhaps it could have been rescued.

    I'm cautiously optimistic regarding the two living chicks given their size and vigorousness, they even starting calling for food while in the box on the drive to the wildlife hospital. The hospital have told me they will go to a carers home for hand feeding and this person will be holding the on-call mobile on Sunday so I can text then with the reference number for an update on how they're doing.

    No idea what happened to the adults, do they abandon nests if chicks start to die and are too big for them to remove? these chicks were pretty big even the deceased ones.

  • Here is a photo of the two surviving chicks. 

  • This them after arrival at the wildlife hospital. They were starting to move around in the box. So hopefully a good sign? 

  • Ahh well done Susan you've done a great job and fingers crossed for the two chicks. Have you any idea what they are feeding them at the Wildlife Hospital they've gone to?

    Thanks
  • Hi Matt, I’m afraid I don’t know what they will be fed. I did see that the hospital was requesting donations of non-fish cat food so possibly that.