While visiting family in Illinois, we were very happy to find a pair of Cedar Waxwings that had built a nest in a backyard locust tree. Cedar Waxwings are late nesters, marking the coming conclusion of the summer breeding season.
We would hear the male waxwing's high pitched call from the top of a large tree across the yard. He'd then proceed to the nest to feed the female who was incubating the eggs.
- Nest is usually on a horizonatal limb or in the fork (the nest we found was in a fork)
- Nest is usually 6-20 feet above the ground but can be lower or higher (this nest was about 15 feet high)
- The nest is built by both sexes
- The nest is made of grass, weeds, twigs, plant fibers and lined with finer materials like moss, rootlets, fine grass, hair (you can see many of these materials in the nest we found, plus what looks like some little fungus-y things)
- There are usually 3-5 eggs
- The female will incubate the eggs 12-13 days
- Both parents will feed the nestlings
- The young will leave the nest in about 14-18 days
It's always so exciting to find an active nest, in whatever stage. I just wish I was going to be there throughout the process, to see the young peek their heads over the side of the nest or to even see them take their first flight.