Fishing for an Oriole Nest
On many occasions I have found birds using human made materials for and with their nest. Many of our nest boxes are not natural but made specifically for the birds to use. Other birds will pick up specific items for attracting the female into their territory like the Bowerbird (from Australia). They will take anything that is blue in coloring and build this elaborate structure and hope the female chooses his territory to build her nest. Then you can have many of our local birds will collect items for their nest like dryer lint, pet hair and even some string from your table cloth. One of these birds you might catching taking some of these items would be the Oriole!
The Baltimore Oriole builds its nest suspended in the fork of the tree around 25-30 feet up. They build at the end of the branch and will construct the nest with a deep pouch. They use many products like bark, fine vines, grasses, hair, string, yarn and anything else they can find that will assist in weaving their nest together. This sometimes can include fishing line along the waters edge. The photo above shows an old oriole nest that was mainly constructed with your all typical fishing line. This line was very brittle and probably a few years old but still holding the structure together perfectly. While holding it closely, you can still see some of the old decomposed material that at one time was also used in the construction of this nest. I strongly suspect that this nest was built by the Baltimore Oriole because of its big pouch, intense weaving and how its positioned on the brance.
Although this unique nest (found by a park employee) was blog worthy to me; I strongly suggest that any fishing wire found on the ground should be picked up immediately. I regularly find dead birds hanging from a bridge or limping because some twine accidentally got it tied around their legs. Many other animals besides birds can also have problems when this fishing lines and will get twisted around their body. Infection and lost of body parts can happen due to the strength of the twine. I know that sometimes it is impossible to pick up every bit of trash you find laying around but I always make an extra effort in picking it up every time I come across fishing line strung about. There is a wonderful story on NPR talking about some cleaning up Fishing Debris along beaches in California |CLICK HERE|.
Side view of the fishing line nest!