when do birds lay eggs in massachusetts

Procrastinators rejoice. I’m going to give you an excuse to put off a few chores for another month or so.

Do you have trees on your property that need to come down? Bushes that need to be pruned? Perhaps a field or meadow that needs to be mowed?

Well, I’m not only giving you permission (not that you need that anyway) to hold off for a while, but urging you to do so.

An interesting email came my way this week from a New Hampshire couple. They had purchased property about 25 years ago that at the time was an abandoned Christmas tree lot. Most of the trees are now dead or dying and need to come down. The couple, to their credit, wants to make sure the nesting season is over before they go forward with any of the work.

So, just when is it safe to take down trees or cut fields that may house nesting birds?

So when is it okay to clear fields or remove trees that might be home to birds that are nesting?

This week, I received an intriguing email from a couple in New Hampshire. About twenty-five years prior, they had bought a piece of land that had been an abandoned Christmas tree lot. Now that most of the trees are dead or dying, they must be removed. To their credit, the couple wants to wait to start any work until after the nesting season has passed.

Procrastinators rejoice. I’m going to give you a reason to put off doing a few tasks for about another month.

Do you have any trees that need to be taken down from your property? Maybe some bushes that need to be trimmed? Maybe there’s a field or meadow that needs to be mowed?

Well, I’m not only encouraging you to wait a little while, but I’m also giving you permission to do so (not that you needed that anyway).

What To Do with Nests in Undesirable Locations

Relocating an active nest is not an option because birds lack reason and their parents won’t go looking for their nest if it disappears. It’s advisable to remove nests and keep birds out of buildings in the fall or winter. It is also illegal, both federally and state-wise, to interfere with an active native species nest.

Nests In, On, or Near Buildings

Many bird species build their nests in the cracks and crevices of buildings, on balconies and building ledges, and, in the case of the House Finch, in hanging plants. Observing these nests can be a source of enjoyment. Nonetheless, nesting behavior can occasionally lead to disputes between birds and humans. This frequently occurs in the nests of invasive species like house sparrows, pigeons, and European starlings.

The only bird species in Massachusetts that nests and successfully raises its young in chimneys is the chimney swift. There is only one pair in a house chimney, but they may nest in large airshafts or chimneys. There is no need for concern if a homeowner discovers that there is a nest in the chimney—typically due to the noisy chattering of the young as the parents come in with food.

There won’t be a fire or disease spread because of the nest. Intervention is only required if an active nest has collapsed into the fireplace or onto the damper. In this instance, every effort should be made to get the young back up the chimney so their parents can take care of them going forward.


What month do birds lay eggs?

When Is Bird Nesting Season? Bird nesting season usually occurs in spring (around March 20 – June 20).

How many times will birds lay eggs in a year?

Most birds nest only once per year, but some species, like the American Robin, can have up to 4 or 5 nests during a single breeding season. After leaving the nest (fledging) young birds typically remain close to their parents for a short period.

Is it illegal to remove a birds nest in Massachusetts?

Birds. Most birds are protected by federal laws under the “Migratory Bird Act of 1918,” as well as by Massachusetts state laws. It is illegal to destroy, relocate, or possess wild birds, their nests, or their eggs. The only exceptions are non-native species—House Sparrows, European Starlings, and Rock Pigeons.

What month do sparrows lay eggs?

Breeding Period:
Early May through late September.
Clutch size:
Typically 5 eggs on average but ranges between 1 to 8 eggs.
Number of broods:
Multiple broods per year.
Incubation Period:
Typically 11 days but can extend to 14 days in regions of cold temperatures.