Uncle Robin, that's me! An American Robin (Turdus migratorius) picked the fuchsia basket on my entry porch to build her nest. Needless to say, this has made watering and picking off old blooms a bit complicated. I am basically banished from the porch.
The fuchsia needs to be watered two or three times a week. The method is to peek out and find a moment when the parent is not there. Then quickly go out and water around the sides of the nest before dashing into the house again. I've given up on picking off the old blooms to keep it flowering. The birds are more interesting anyway.
When she was sitting on eggs, she rarely left the nest. Now she has three little mouths to feed and this is keeping her busy from dawn to dusk. While she's out foraging, I get a chance to go out and water.
Dad might be helping out with the feeding. With the poor lighting, it's hard to tell, but that could be Mom in the first photo, Dad in the second and third.
When I go out there, the chicks sense my presence and pop up with mouths agape. They don't make a sound. Other baby birds make a lot of noise when they're fed, but not these guys. I am sure that's to avoid attracting the wrong attention.
This is a perfect nesting site, but a terrible location for photography. These photos were shot from about forty feet away at 300 mm, then cropped even further to get in close.
I had to do a lot of fussing with the lighting when they were edited. The fuchsia basket is under the eave on the north side of the house. The birds are always in deep shade. Consequently there is a lot of noise in these shots. The camera also has difficulty focusing on poorly lighted objects. The photos are not very good, but you get the idea. The first photo shot in the evening has the best focus and lighting. The second two were shot around 7 AM. I will try to get some better pictures in the coming evenings.
It remains to be seen how the chicks will react when they're old enough to see me. When I go out to water, will they become frightened and flee the nest or just give me that "what do YOU want" look?
UPDATE Here is this evening's photo 7/16/2014 at 6:45 PM:
Today's photo taken around midday has the best lighting so far. The chicks have their eyes open now. When I watered this morning they looked right at me. I am not sure they can see very will yet. They did not appear alarmed or even interested. Maybe I just bore them.