A Lesson to Leave Wildlife Alone in Colorado, or Face a Felony
As a huge nature and animal lover, one of the coolest things to witness last summer was the entire cycle of two birds building a nest and laying eggs in a hanging plant on my patio. Watching the parents guard the nest and then the eggs finally hatching was both exciting and adorable.
I was hoping the birds would come back to build another nest in the same spot this year, but instead, they chose a new location - safely nestled within a wreath that hangs on my neighbor's front door. Regardless, it'd still be exciting to be able to watch the whole process happen again.
Over Memorial Day weekend, however, I walked out of the front door to discover that my neighbor had removed the nest from her wreath and placed it on the staircase that's used daily by at least six different people in the building. Maybe I'm a sensitive soul, but knowing she did this made me so mad! Why would she ruin these birds' chance of survival? Although she left the nest nearby, it was in the path of destruction sitting in the middle of the stairs. Not wanting the eggs to get crushed, I moved the nest to a pot on my patio hoping the mother would be able to find her way back to it.
Since it was a holiday, local animal control offices were closed. The Nothern Colorado Wildlife Center recommended that I keep the nest as close as possible with a chance the mom would return. Apparently, it's hard for females to find their eggs in these types of cases though because they can't hear as they could with hatched babies. Birds typically have very poor senses of smell too. The NCWC explained that if the mother doesn't come back to the nest after a full day, the eggs will have died because of not having incubation.
The wildlife center also noted that what my neighbor did is actually federally illegal because of this exact situation. She could be charged with a felony and likely had no idea. This is why it's important for residents to educate themselves on coexisting with wildlife in Colorado, and how to properly manage unwanted animals on their property.