When we came home last weekend we were surprised to see that there were 2 eggs in the box. Not having seen the blues for a couple of days before we left we thought they might have abandoned the nest. My theory was that they were frightened to return to the yard because HWNSNBP inadvertently left the Have-a-Heart trap out overnight and instead of capturing the pesky groundhog, he captured a raccoon. Only thing was, he forgot to check the trap in the morning also and didn't see the raccoon until late afternoon at which time he carefully set the raccoon free. I think the birds were aware of the predator being there. There wasn't much happening at the feeder either until I asked him to remove the trap altogether. So perhaps the blues were just being wary. In any case.... on Monday there was another egg. And Tuesday, when I came home from work Mrs. Blue was sitting on the eggs. We thought that was a bit premature, but sometimes they only lay 3 so we didn't think anything of it. Not until it dawned on us Wednesday that she hadn't moved. She hadn't changed position. Mr. Blue was seen to look in on her now and then. But she didn't seem to even stir in his presence. So HWNSNBP walked up to the garden and tapped on the box. No movement. He climbed the ladder and looked in and she did not move. She was dead. No sign of attack. We think that she may have had trouble laying an egg that 4th day - become egg-bound - and sadly it killed her. There were three eggs under her and one was partially collapsed which also could mean that she wasn't producing enough calcium. We'll never know.
HWNSNBP removed the whole nest with her intact. I took the two eggs that weren't broken. You can see how small they are compared with a dime. We did call the Raptor Trust to see if they would take the eggs but they do not incubate eggs there and said that at this point they were probably not viable. So sad.
Returning today we see that the wrens are attempting to claim the box. Now that battle begins!