Blue Tit Babies In Downpipe

Hello can anyone give me advice on what to do about a nest in a pipe please? It’s a thick cast iron down pipe that is unused and the nest seems to be 2-3 feet down it. Four little chicks look quite well grown and feathered and are being fed by the parents. 
I’m concerned that while the parents can somehow manage to get up and down the inside of this pipe, the little ones won’t be able to scale it. 

should I try to move them? Or maybe put a twig in the pipe to help them climb out?  

  • Hi there Jhlm, as the chicks are still being fed by the parents and this is an active nest you must do nothing for the time being; when the time comes for them to fledge the parents will tempt them out with food and until then you won't know if they can manage to scramble out themselves so I suggest you just monitor from a distance without getting close to the nest so the parents continue to feed the chicks. It's a watch and wait for now as it's illegal to do anything you suggest at the moment with an active nest. It looks a pretty wide drainage pipe with rough edges the chicks could maybe cling to. Fingers crossed they will manage to get out themselves. If there are any problems eventually when it comes time to fledging, nip back on here for further advice and someone will try assist you but for now keep distance from the nest to allow the parent birds to continue to feed their chicks. Good luck.

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    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again" 

  • In reply to HAZY:

    Thanks for the advice! I’ll keep an eye on it.
  • The adult birds don’t seem to be feeding them today. I looked inside and I can only see three now. They don’t look very happy.
  • Could it be that one has fledged & adults are not feeding in order to entice the others out? No expert, just my thoughts!

     

     2013 photos & vids here

    eff37 on Flickr

  • There are only 2 alive this morning. I think they are sitting on the dead one. I can hear them cheeping and flapping inside the pipe. The parents are flitting around nearby but don’t seem to be feeding them very often like they were before. Should I try and pull them out now?
  • Sounds as if parent birds are trying to entice them out. Keep a close watch on parent activity!

     

     2013 photos & vids here

    eff37 on Flickr

  • Oh that is such dreadful & upsetting news ... there are so many sad outcomes to Blue Tit nests, seems worse this year & wonder if this prolonged sunny & dry spell is seriously affecting availability of food?

     

     2013 photos & vids here

    eff37 on Flickr

  • At end of season when it is permitted to clean out nests will you then fill &/or cap off this highly unsuitable nest site?

     

     2013 photos & vids here

    eff37 on Flickr

  • So sorry to hear the update Jlhm, for some reason this year, as Wendy says, the Blue Tits seem to have had a particularly bad season either due to choosing bad nesting places or as a result of the prolonged dry, hot weather. It is always so upsetting to witness these tragic outcomes.

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    Regards, Hazel 

    "Each kindness shown to birds or men is sure to flutter back again"