When Do Birds Start Nesting

When Do Birds Start Nesting

Birds always have incredible features that we are curious about. Their appearance, characteristics, way of collecting foods and other things, chirping, and finally nesting in the breeding season always fascinate us. However, we still wonder, when do birds start nesting?

Nesting or the breeding season is an essential part of a bird’s life. We can see the entire life cycle of a bird at that time. You will understand various processes from hatching to laying eggs and the repeating cycle of a bird. Then you must state, “how exciting it is.”

At some point in a year, you must find a nest in your backyard. That time is the breeding time for that particular species of bird. Yet, different species started nesting very early, and they have their reason for that.

Knowing the breeding cycle of a bird not only gives you satisfaction, but you can contribute help to their crucial but critical time of life.

With that motive, here we explained answers to a few mostly asked questions, along with some tips for nature and wildlife lovers to help those charming little buddies in their hardest periods. So, let’s have a closer look.

When Do Birds Start Nesting (nesting season of some known species)

Birds have a particular season when they start their breeding cycle. And the time you find lots of nests around your yard or nearby forest, you may get an idea that it’s the breeding time.

There are around 9,000 to 10,000 species of birds globally, according to the closest estimations. Most of the North American and European bird species breed earlier in spring. So, it’s apparent that you can see their presence the highest at that time.

The birds that started nesting earlier have several benefits. A bird species always has competition with other similar breeders for finding an appropriate nesting place.

Further, if they start an earlier cycle, then they have advantages of getting a suitable tree hood or other places which seem appropriate for them. They also have competition in searching for Nesting raw materials.

So, like the saying “an early bird catches the worm,” early nesting has great significance for birds.

All species have a specific way and time for starting breeding, yet discussing all species worldwide is not possible in just one article. Therefore, today we will explore the most common species of birds, who started their nesting earlier, from different world regions. So, let’s see.


You must have heard of Raven once in your life through several poems. We know Raven for death and unkindness. However, in the UK, Raven is one of the earlier nesting birds who nest in late February. Like humans, Raven also pairs up for a lifetime, and thus, don’t worry every year about the pairing.

American Robin

In North America, Robin(also called red robin for red-colored breast) is said to be the first bred bird. It starts nesting in the spring season after some rituals in winter. During the season (usually ranges from April to July), it broods three times. The first egg-laying bird in America mostly makes nests with fine grasses, muds, and other things like wool, hair, and string.


Cross-bill usually found in higher northern hemisphere latitude, named so due to its twisted bill. This species often breeds in January and sometimes even earlier. Cross-bills have six species and feed on cones of conifer plants. The breeding season mostly started from summer to next spring. When food is abundant, pairs broods twice in the same nesting season.

Grey heron

Grey herons start nesting in February last and usually use the same nest repeatedly. They nest in groups, and the site is called heronries. The breeding season of Grey heron started from the start of February and remained till early June.

Common Starling

The common starling is also known as European starling for its habitat in British isles and also seen in the United States. They usually nest in tree stumps, hollowed trees, and also birdhouses made by humans during spring and summer. Nests are typically created by both males and females and with feathers, wool, soft leaves, hairs, and straws.

Downy Woodpecker

Dowry woodpecker is another commonly seen bird that feeds mostly through insects. Their nesting time is near spring season when they form nests in trees through excavation for 1 to 3 weeks. They usually have one brood in a single season.

Bird Nesting time in India

India has a suitable climate for the breeding or nesting season of a variety of birds. Most migrants come previous to the rainy season as this time of the year brings them plenty of food sources. The majority of the fruit or nectar feeder birds have breeding season between November to next April when enormous diversity of fruits and flowers are available.

If you wonder “when do birds start nesting in India,” then the answer is mostly between February to October with the maximum number in April and lowest in July due to the high rainfall.

In northern India, especially at Calicut, Kerala, five breeding or nesting seasons are found among species. Some species show the breeding season throughout the year, while some have between March and June called pre-monsoon breeders. Further, some other species such as Crow-pheasant and Tailor Bird nests between the rainy season usually lasts between June to September.

Besides, some other birds like Koel, Purple sunbird bread between November to February and are known as cool-season breeders. Cool and pre-monsoon nesters include Yellow-wattled Lapwing, Common Myna, and Indian Robin.

The typical Indian Woodpeckers, Bee-eaters, Pigeons, Crow, Sparrow, Hummingbird, and some other mostly seen birds also start nesting between the regular breeding season mainly in April.

How Long Do Birds Stay in the Nest?

In their breeding cycle, birds first search for the appropriate nesting place and then come up through courtship and pairing rituals. After finding pairing, both male and female birds started constructing nests. This is the laborious period for both. Sometimes only females make the nests.

The process of mating or copulation occurs before or after nest building, and then mother birds get prepared for laying and hatching eggs by incubation. Then the crucial time of caring nestlings started. This time the baby birds who are entirely dependent on their parents remain at the risk of becoming the prey of predators.

Baby birds remain in their nests during the period of nesting to fledging. This time usually lasts between 2 to 3 weeks for songbirds. Precocial birds stay for a short period in the nest. Further, some other bird species may have a long duration of 8 to 10 weeks in the nest.

When Do Birds Leave the Nest and how they know?

This is another most asked question after “when do birds start nesting,” and the answer is quite straightforward. This is a tradition for birds to learn how to survive without parents and then fly away.

Birds with open cup nests near the ground are the most sufferer of being eaten by predators. The decision of a fledgling earlier is dangerous as this time; the wings are not fully developed to reach the sky.

Being fledgling, juveniles have to learn how to find food, or how to fly like parents. Most of the fledglings become prey to predators in the first year because they cannot fly with short, underdeveloped wings.

The most awkward and risky period of life gives them the strength to survive in any situation. After leaving the nest, juveniles remain in contact with their parents for a few days and then start their new life as soon as possible.

Conclusion of When do birds starts Nesting

If you still have questions on “when do birds start nesting,” then the most specific answer is in the spring season, which lasts between March to June for all species of birds in the world. However, the breeding period differs, and thus the nesting time is also varied for some groups of birds.

Birds are the most intelligent architects in nature, which can be seen through the different kinds of nests they make. And during their construction, you can help them out in different ways by providing materials like hairs, wools, features of short lengths for their nests, eggshells for female birds which are helpful in their egg formation, and so on.

Besides facts about their nesting, there are many fascinating things to know about birds in their breeding cycles. If you have an interest in knowing all those, comment down below, we will represent them in another article. For more exciting topics, follow us!




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