Birds nesting in shed due for demolition

Hi Everyone

New to this but I need some expert advice. we have a large (8m x 4m) shed in the bottom of our garden which we were about to demolish to build a new one, it is very run down. My wife noticed birds flying in and out holes in some of the woodwork, neither of us are experts but the best description I have is:

1) The first birds are small and brown, no other colours.

2) The second are same size, small but black and white.

It would seem that both types are nesting, if we walk around in the shed the tweeting gets various furious, or they can be spotted on a nearby fence eyeing us up. We do not in any way want to harm any birds, so I have two questions. What should we do, and when? I was hoping to start demolition and a new base in April but I don’t think this will be possible now...

thank you!

  • Hi Alex welcome to the community.
    Thanks for posting on here, by law all nesting birds are protected by the Wildlife and Countryside act and you would need a special licence form Natural England to dispose of any active nests.
    Is there any chance you could get some photos, even if it is off your phone then someone may tell you when they stop nesting, some birds have just one clutch of eggs but some may have more.

    My Flickr photos

  • Hi Alan,

    Thank you for the prompt reply!

    As I pointed out we do not want to harm any birds.... anyway I am dusting off my DLSR and lens now. My wife says she has not seen the little brown ones for a week, but I will see what I can photograph, watch this space - but please bear in mind I am no professional!

  • Any sort of shot will be able to ID them Alex.
    If you manage to get some photos click the "use rich formatting" link under your first post and you should see the full text editor...there is a 4MB file size limit.

    My Flickr photos

  • Hi Alan,

    After several hours of staring at the shed it would seem only one type of bird is flying in and out of one hole on the front edge. A bluetit unless I am mistaken - it appears to be bringing food or someone else to the entrance. Couple of poor photos (taken though glass) links below:


  • Yep it is a Blue Tit Alex, it is a bit early for youngsters but they could have started in a mild spell.
    Here are some details off the Internet..
    'The female lays 7-13 eggs in April-May, which she incubates for 12-16 days. The male feeds the female while she is brooding, and when the chicks hatch, both parents feed them. The chicks fledge after 19 days. Blue tits sometimes rear two broods a year, but this almost never happens in Britain.'

    My Flickr photos

  • Alex just a thought, when you build your new shed you could consider putting a box on the outside for them next year, or even drill a hole in the side and install a box on the inside.

    My Flickr photos

  • Hi Alex,
    It's obvious from the fact that you posted and from the photos that you care. That, already, is brilliant.

    Looks like, if you don't mind me suggesting, you should bump another project or two to the top of your list, then do that shed later in the year?

    In my experience (they've been nesting outside our kitchen window in an open but external courtyard for the 11 years we've lived here), you'll find the feeding very easy to get a handle on, particularly when both adults are feeding the hatched youngsters (it's pretty non-stop). Then, one morning, nothing, and they'll all be gone (worth waiting an exta week to be sure). Here at least, they also don't tend to hang around close the nest as some of our other nesters do.

    One thing I would add to Alan's excellent information and advice. If you do decide to put off the shed project, try to leave everything around the shed as it is now. The Blue Tits probably have their various staging posts from which they intend to approach and enter the nesting site; and they will also have made some decisions about how their youngsters will get out once they have fledged.

    As little disturbance as possible, perhaps, and an absolutely solid gold opportunity to get to know that DLSR again (and to post the results on here?).

    All the best from blowy Switzerland, where the Black Kites blew in today from warmer climes.
  • Hi Dave & Allen,

    Thank you both for your excellent advice. I have agreed with the wife to bump the project down the list until we are sure they have left the nest and wont we disturb anything in the garden until then. We had already agreed bird boxes should go the new shed, so they can return (hopefully) next year.

    This will also please the builder who pointed out waiting till warmer weather to lay a base which could take 5 weeks to harden is always a good idea.

    If I get time to snap any more photographs I will post them (assuming I get time around 2 small children).

    Thanks again!

  • Morning Alex,
    That's really great news. And you get to keep your builder happy (always a good thing).

    Looking forward to seeing the photos; our Blue Tits are currently refreshing their nesting box.

    All the best -