Yesterday Bob pulled out some ugly, scraggly shrubs near our front door, so we could replace them with azaleas. He commented to me that a sparrow in the dogwood tree was scolding him the whole time.
Then we saw the nest. One of the ugly shrubs had been home to a nest full of baby birds. They had survived having their home uprooted, and were still in the nest as it lay on the sidewalk in the debris of branches. The mother sparrow still shrieked at us from the top of the dogwood tree.
Bob tried to place the nest into the branches of the dogwood tree, but there wasn’t a good, stable joint to sit it in. Also, that nest would have been out in the open and so vulnerable. So instead, he gently set the nest in the remaining shrub next to the ones he’d removed. He had to tie it with twine to make sure it wouldn’t fall.
As we planted the new azaleas, we worried that the sparrow parents wouldn’t find their babies in the new location, or that they would reject the nest after we’d tampered with it. But a half-hour later, two sparrows were flying back and forth, bringing food for those hatchlings.