Turtle dove keeping its babies warm in the nest made of shredded paper.

Turtle dove keeping babies warm in homemade nest.

Last year we had a bird create a nest in the fence around our deck in the backyard.  I think squirrels got to it or something but the nest and the bird wasn’t there long.  This year we had a turtle dove build a nest in the other corner of our deck.

A couple of days ago there was a huge windstorm and my wife found that the nest had been blown away.  She looked around and found the babies had hatched but had been blown into and dropped on the grass.  She picked them up and brought them inside and made a nest in a shoe box for them out of shredded paper.  She then fed them baby food with an eye dropper.  Things were not looking so good for them though, and we knew the babies needed their mommy.  Kelley saw later that day the mom came back and was looking all over for her babies.  My wife took the birds outside to give to the mommy but she was scared away and didn’t return for awhile.

Baby dove being fed

One of the baby doves goes after breakfast

The doves working on improving the nest

Dad dove returns from the Home Depot

My wife tried this a couple more times and then created a new nest out of half a ferret ball and shredded paper and waited for the wind to die down a little and then she put the plastic ball nest back on the fence and waited, hoping the mommy dove would return.  It was still pretty windy and cold so she and the girls were worried that the babies were not going to make it.  A little while later the mommy did return and cautiously approached the nest.  Eventually she made her way over and sat on the nest and warmed up and fed her babies.  We’ve been keeping track of the birds since then and I’ve taken a few pictures.

Dove parents taking shifts watching the little ones

Mom and dad take turns watching out for the babies

Each day the babies get larger and stronger.  This morning my wife was able to sneak over when the mom and the dad were gone and take some pictures of the babies.

It’s really cool to see these guys growing and getting stronger every day, especially when just two days ago we weren’t even sure if they would survive.

I also didn’t know until today that there were two parents that take care of the babies.

The mom and dad dove really seem to work well as a team to keep their babies safe, warm and fed.

A close-up of the babies

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