Bird Nests and Nesting Schemes

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Mound Nests

Our locally famous Chilean Flamingo "Pink Floyd" is, perhaps our only link to a mound-nesting bird in Utah.  Since the probability of Pink Floyd finding a mate, was pretty much zero (unless another Chilean Flamingo should escape from the Tracy Aviary), there wasn't much chance for a flamingo mound nest in the state. 

Chilean Flamingos build a 6 to 18 inch tall nest with a depression on top from mud they pull towards them with their bill.  This protects the single egg from a rise in water level while it is being incubated.     

   "Pink Floyd" our Utah Flamingo, by Jack Binch   ŠJack Binch
In Australia and Asia megapodes build huge mound nests made of soil, sticks of all sizes and leaves which generate heat because of rotting of organic material in the soil.  The male usually does the building and Maintenance work on these mounds and the female will lay the eggs when the mound temperature is at the right level.  The temperature and moisture content is regulated through the entire breeding season which could be as long at eight months.  The Male will stir in more moist material to increase the temperature or open the top of the mound to decrease the temperature to make sure the conditions are just right for the eggs.

The Malleefowl, nesting in more open forest than other megapodes, use the sun as another element for heat regulation in a similar mound-nesting strategy. 

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