Look at how fragile the baby birds are! Just like a baby, they are small, cute, but also very dependent to their parents. Most of the time they rely on them especially to the mother. Baby bird are very young. So how can they survive? How do they find the food and eat? Or most important, how do they learn to use their wings to fly?
It might be absurd for you to imagine the parents will teach the baby bird just like our parents teach us to walk. But animals’ instinct is amazing, you know? Mostly, baby animals will try to copy their parents to do things, from eat, walk, vocalizing, and in the bird case, to fly. Here is some insight for you about baby bird. Let’s join the bird family and see how their young grows!
How Can Baby Birds Face Their First Living?
The stage of baby birds
Baby bird first period of time is depending in the parents. Their needs can be different from each of species. For example, songbirds require feeding for every 15 minutes until up to half an hour for a whole day while doves need a warm food with the right temperatures.
But, what exactly the baby bird faces during their first time? In the first month of life the baby birds have a lot of development stages, from hatching from egg, learning to chirp and communicate, and the last finale: learning how to fly.
This stage is important because the baby birds will have transition from breathing through the egg surface to breathing from their own lungs. Another important thing to mention is that the baby birds need to develop an egg tooth with sharp point on the upper of beak to poke hole through the egg to hatch.
But this tooth will be dissapear after a few days after they hatched and the baby birds begin to open their eyes. You may also notice small feather will start to develop from the skin. After about 5 days, they will be able to stand up by their feet.
2. Between 5 – 10 days
From here, their eyes will completly open and will be able to produce their own body heat. They also will start to chrip when they are hungry! In this stage, not only to stand up but they also be able to yawn, scratch their own heads, strecth their wings, and even climb their nest.
3. After two weeks
After the 10th days, they will begin to leave the nest. Likely they are super active and playful during this stage since they are able to hop and walk around. They also start to sing, or even cry out when they are scared or in pain.
4. Between two weeks to one month
Now they will be big and mature enough to fly and live seperately from their parents. It probaby takes several weeks to bird to learn to fly. How do they learn?
Learn how to fly
Usually their mother will always take care of them and give them food in their mouth. But slowly she will stand farther and farther away from the nest. She forces her baby to get their food by theirself from the outside of the nest. This method will make the baby birds (who are no longer a baby) realize their needs for food and raise their motivation to hunt out of their comfort nest.
For the first time they will likely fall to the ground, but practice makes perfect right? They eventually learn to spread and flap their wings correctly after a few attempts.
But some studies also found that sometimes, the parents will push the baby out of their nest when the baby doesn’t realize their needs and becomes too dependent to the parents. Then the only way to teach them is by forcing them out! The baby will get the lesson to fly with the parents show them that unless they learn to go outside their nest and fly, they will not get any food. Make them proud, son! Show your wings!
But there is a case when the bird has left the nest but still cannot fly. This is called fledgling. They are often brought to the rehabilitation center because they might has been injured before.
How the baby birds eat and find food
Generally, baby bird eat whatever their parents are having. Born baby bird cannot break down the food by itself so the parents have to partially digest or mash the texture of the food before giving them to the baby bird to make it safe. They are also fed regurgiated food from their parents’ mouth.
As the baby bird gets bigger, baby bird food will start to consist with solid food, combine with the mash one. After the baby bird is nearly fully feathered, baby bird will start pecking at the food out of coriosity and start to eat solid based food like live mealworms or crickets. Baby bird will also learn to stop begging for food and eat on its own. The baby bird will spend most of the time outside the nest and begin to hunt and collect its own food in the wild. It is our big boy now!
But some type of bird already know how to eat on their own immediately after they are hatching. This bird is called precocial, for examples ducks and quail.
That is all the basic on how baby birds face their first living. As a small creatures it must be hard for them to do things. But luckily they have the ability and instinct since they are born. Look at how baby bird knows how to crack open the egg shell! Isn’t that amazing? Hope this information can make you appreciate animals living in general. We share the same mother earth, don’t we?