Robins are a common sight in most gardens, and ours is no exception. They are bold and bright, and follow us around as we dig the soil exposing insects, which they opportunistically snatch, almost from under our feet.
I have been meaning to produce a robin sculpture for quite a few years and this spring I had an excellent and sustained views of a Robin who occupied a nest box on our house wall – almost as soon as it was erected. This was an ideal chance to get some video footage for reference purposes (you can see a short version of the video at the bottom of the page).
Unfortunately, the nest box wasn’t very secure as the foliage had not had a chance to grow over it and it was in full view of magpies and other corvids, who regularly raid our nests. In fact we had already lost one nest full of baby robins a few weeks earlier. A couple of years ago we saw (on another camera we had installed) a magpie take two baby blackbirds from a nest. Two managed to get away, and we think that at least one of the babies finally survived.
The aim of all of the robin watching was to produce a little bronze robin statue. I carved the original model for the robin in lime wood from which the bronze was cast. The bronze is satisfyingly heavy and retails for £180. It makes a lovely and unusual Christmas gift.
Against general advice we decided to interfere with nature, and I took the squirrel cage off one of our birdfeeders, and fixed it over the entrance of the nest box. We watched anxiously, wondering if my newly attached entrance portico would put the robin off. But, not at all. She obviously felt it was a prestigious addition, and was quite happy to scramble through the wire cage, to reach and finish her nest building. As you can see from this short video – eggs were laid, the chicks hatched and (hurrah) fledged successfully.