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Birds Take Line Honors in Non-Sailing Day Excuses

Last week we wrote about a how a bird’s nest had paused Tom and Anne Bishop’s sailing plans for several weeks. Well, it seems we stirred the nest with this one — despite our initial skepticism, it turns out that birds are quite adept at keeping sailors at the docks. We received comments from several readers who’ve had similar experiences. When you think about it, it makes sense that birds would choose to nest in sailboats. What better way is there to give your babies a flying start than to bring them up on a wind-powered vessel?

Gary Clausen is another sailor who waited until the kids had ‘flown the coop.’ “Me too, it was during spring with flawless weather and discovered a nest made into the boom gooseneck, we thought about going out but Mom would have come back to an empty slip and maybe taken off. The boat sat for weeks while the three babies grew and then flew away.” Gary also mentioned that he’s been stuck in marina mud a few times when his keel dug in during low tide, so it’s not always about the birds.

“Pigeons keep laying eggs in my overturned kayak on the deck of a friend’s catamaran in Grand Marina,” Dana Smith shared.

Birds take line honors
OK, the nest is not in a sailboat, but the kayak was on a sailboat, so in our way of thinking, that counts.
© 2021 Dana Smith

“In Panama we had a bird build his nest in our sail cover. I would destroy the nest and a day later it would be back,” Chris Lonjers wrote.

One of Aldred Chipman’s customers asked him to make a mainsail cover that would “keep the birds out.” His response? “I asked if he’d ever noticed the size of the entry to a birdhouse.”

It’s interesting to note that our tiny feathered friends also enjoy building their homes in radar reflectors.

Patricia Ching wrote, “We delayed moving our sailboat from San Diego to Ventura until the hummingbird who built her nest in the radar reflector raised her baby! ?

“Same thing, (and the same species of bird) happened to us,” Steve Bondelid commented. “The nest was built in the “catch rain” position of our radar reflector, which was protected from weather by its mounting position under our radar.”

Thanks for sharing your bird stories, sailors. It seems we’ll have to keep a closer eye on what’s going on inside our covers; in fact, in any little crevice. But, as Lola Roxy wrote, perhaps there’s a silver lining. “They are kind and leaving you breakfast ????? All you need is some bacon ?? ”

Maybe we should have used the nest photo for a Caption Contest(!)?

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