Eggs not hatching, Hawks?

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Posts: 446
Joined: Sat Jul 03, 2004 3:01 pm
Location: Oklahoma/Norman

I have several more than usual of nests with eggs that are not hatching, and probably wont. It seems like I'm having fewer hawk attacks than usual.
Usually I see some evidence like feathers on ground etc and have seen very little. I am working a 1/2 time job and even spending more time at home than I have for last 25 years and still haven't seen many.
I have over 50 pairs and my theory is the bigger colony can alert and protect better.
It always seems worse the first few arrivals and when I down to the late 2 or 3 nests to fledge.
I've witness a pair of hawks come in about every 30-45 minutes one year until I couldn't take it anymore.

Are there a lot of other reasons beside predation that causes nests of eggs to be abandoned?
Posts: 319
Joined: Mon May 12, 2014 1:02 pm
Location: Western KY
Martin Colony History:

Tried to attract PMs since 2004; began a more ernest attempt in 2014.

2018 — 3 pairs: 1 ASY pair & 1 SY pair in the Trio; 1 SY pair in a supergourd on the gourd multi-rack.

2019 — 6 pairs

2020 — In progress

Current housing consists of two modified Trio M12Ks at 20' and a round gourd rack at 20'.

We've also provided housing for bluebirds, Carolina wrens, house wrens, Carolina chickadees, tufted titmice, great-crested flycatchers and northern flickers for ~15 years.

Eggs are sometimes infertile though the pair will often attempt to renest if that is the case and it is still early in the season. Females can also be lost to illness and accidents. Only the female has a brood patch for properly incubating eggs so without her the eggs will not hatch.
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