Nesting is a Survival Challenge for Birds: My Collage for LMAC 154

in Let's Make a Collage2 months ago (edited)

nesting 154 collage animals.gif

This is the first LMAC contest for 2023. I almost didn't make a collage, because I was feeling a little off. But I tried and came up with the GIF at the top of the page.

The template photo this week, from which all LMAC participants work, was irresistible. If you check out the winning collages posted on the LMAC blog, you will see what @shaka's photo inspired.
MoMFQIg - Imgur.jpg

When I first saw the template I imagined the tree on the left to be a bird-like creature. From that, the scene in my collage evolved.

Ground Nesting Birds

It seems to the casual eye that a bird's nest on the ground is more vulnerable than a bird's nest on a cliff or on a tree. The first thing that occurs to a casual observer is predators. The nests on the ground seem so exposed.

I did a little checking and learned that it is true that survival rates of ground nesting birds are lower than for birds that nest in more discrete places. However, it turns out that predators are not the only threat.

A great threat may be habitat change. This results not only in lost of nesting areas, but also of food sources.

Winter Wren
Winter_wren_in_Prospect_Park_(32249) Rhododendrites 4.0.jpg
Credit: Rhododendrites. Used under CC 4.0 International license The winter wren is a species that nests in montane spruce-fir trees (Maine, USA). Because of climate change, birds that nest in these trees are moving to lower elevations. Living conditions for the birds are more marginal at these elevations. The birds will have less pairing success and therefore lower reproductive rates.

Human activity affects bird survival in a number of ways. Global warming, for example, is believed to cause changes in migration patterns. Also rising sea levels, drought and fire all affect bird nesting.

New Zealand Quail (Coturnix novaezelandiae)
Coturnix_novaezelandiae_white_background Walter Lawry Buller public.jpg
Credit: Walter Lawry Buller. Public domain. The New Zealand quail has been extinct for more than a hundred years. Habitat change and introduced predators (including humans) pushed it into extinction.

Another impact on birds, especially ground nesting birds, is the use of agrochemicals. Studies of bird carcasses show high concentrations of organochlorine pesticide. This may have been absorbed directly or through ingestion of contaminated insects and vegetation.

Obviously, development--community expansion, road building and conversion of land to agricultural use--also impacts survival of birds, ground nesting and otherwise. This is direct loss of habitat, disruption of food source and nesting areas.

So, although my collage shows the threat to birds from predators, the story of bird survival is much more complex. I have not even touched the surface here.

My Collage
(I don't compete in the contest)

I tapped a number of resources in the LMAC Image Library, LIL. Here is a still frame so you can appreciate the images of different LIL contributors.

nesting 154 collage animals.png

I turned to Pixabay and found a Clker-Free-Vector-Image for the nest itself.

The process of making this was very disorganized. I went in several directions. Here are a few intermediate steps:

In my first crude attempt at a collage I tried to show cooperative nest building. This was a dead end.
154 nest 7 for blog.png

I regrouped and started on the current version. Here are a few images from that process:
progress for 154.png


You can see by the images I used in my collage that LIL is a rich resource. All images have been contributed by Hive members and all may be borrowed. The images are in the public domain. Procedures for borrowing and contributing are spelled out here

The LMAC contest, of course, has attracted artists and non-artists (me). This community is a place where anyone with a creative urge can participate and possibly win a prize. Check out the winners for this week here. Tomorrow we begin round #155. Join us, please.

Thank you for reading my blog. I wish everyone peace, health and creative experience.

Hive on!


Hi @agmoore!
We are lucky that you are not allowed to participate in the competition, because we would not have a chance. Once again you have created a small masterpiece, wonderful. 😎

Hello my friend @muelli,
Thank you for coming by. I was feeling not too well so I'm glad I could get something out. You are very kind in your praise, and very generous😇.

So glad you have time to participate in the contest again.

So why aren't you allowed to compete in the contest? Are you one of the judges?

Hello @mythcrusher,

That's exactly it. I am one of the judges. I have been connected with this community for years and really think it is a great asset to Hive,.

Thanks for stopping by.

Oh, I hope you are feeling better. All the best! 😎

I hope you are feeling much better now A.G. @agmoore. Animations and drawings are wonderful. I love how you have the movement of the eagle. Thanks for including my lil images.

Thanks for the information on the bird survival.

Have a wonderful Thursday and take care. ♥️

Thank you dear @redheadpei. You definitely have the most endearing animals in the LIL gallery. I think your affection for them comes right through the lens. I exploit that emotion when I use your images😇

It is a better Thursday than the last days have been. I'm finally coming out of the woods, feeling more like myself. Whew! I was hard to live with 😂 Poor husband.

Thank you for stopping by and for your generous assessment of my blog. I'm really interested in ground-nesting birds. May do more research on them.

Have the most wonderful Thursday, and weekend my friend.

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Thank you, @phage93. Much appreciated.

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Hi, Beautiful Collage


Thank you much, @eve66 🌞🌷🐤

Love it. Love the colour and the movement.
I'm surrounded by hundreds of birds, even now in winter, so it's hard to appreciate what sort of pressure our human activity has put them under. We have 2 sweet little robins living in our chicken barn who head off in the morning when I open up and come back before the 5pm curfew. The wonders of nature!.

come back before the 5pm curfew

Funny how they know. If they don't adapt, they don't survive.

Thanks for your kind comment. I struggled to do this one and then just went with what I wanted to say. When the symbolic fails, go for the literal 😆

I love your writing. Just read you CNF piece for inkwell. If I were younger I'd be rolling on the floor. Now I'll just settle for an audible chuckle.😁

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