Miracles come at no cost. Like meteors, which are strikingly brilliant, free, and unpredictable a Robin family decided to build their nest in the rafter of our front porch. They asked nothing of us and artfully wove a solid twig and mud nest in four days time. They ignored us as we entered and left our house and we let them build. But I did set up a webcam, then captured daily photos and sent commentary to friends who asked me to share. This is that story.
We named the female "Rafaela", the feminine form of Raphael, God's winged messenger. After she and her mate built the nest, she proved a reliable brooder, staying on the nest most of the time. We set the web cam up to watch the nest continually. The red arrow points to the nest in our front porch. The white webcam is visible to the left.
As the days passed we noticed that the male came to feed her and she wasn't leaving, so I used a ladder to check the contents of the nest and found three, then four eggs. If she had to leave, the male would come stand on the nest to guard it.
After less than three weeks, baby birds hatched. At first they were tiny and fuzzy, with their eyes closed and no feathers. They ate voraciously. The male was busy gathering worms from our front yard to feed them.
Braelyn, the grand-daughter of a friend, watched the baby birds develop each day from Omaha, Nebraska. So we put a sign up by the nest she could see. The birds did not mind, they were too busy eating and growing. The male would come feed them worms and blueberries, often more than once per hour.
The babies developed feathers, opened their eyes, and overflowed the nest. Then they hopped onto the rafter, tested their wings and flew away. Once the nest was empty, they never came back so we took it down.