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Blackbirds or blackbirds (Turdus merula) are among the best known and most widespread of our native bird species. You can find out when and how often they breed here.

In a nutshell

  • If the weather is favourable, the breeding phase begins as early as the end of February
  • The blackbird usually breeds three times a year, in exceptional cases even up to five times
  • The males take an active part in brood care, so that the females can quickly start incubating newly laid eggs again

When does the blackbird breed?

Blackbirds, like many other birds, depend on the weather conditions when they start breeding. Usually the breeding season begins between late February and early March and lasts into August. However, unfavorable, i.e. particularly cold, weather can result in a later start and an earlier end, while a particularly early start of spring can also lead to an earlier start and longer duration of breeding.

How long does a breeding season last?

Unlike other, much larger bird species, the blackbird breeds several times a year. The prerequisite for this is their short incubation period. It consists of several phases:

  • Courtship - few days
  • pairing
  • Nest building - few days
  • Egg Laying - 3 to 6 eggs
  • Incubation period - 2 weeks
  • Rearing to nest escape - 2 weeks
  • Subsequent feeding time by parent animals - 3 weeks

Altogether there is a period of time for an entire mating and breeding phase of about 8 weeks or two months. Since the general period of possible blackbird broods ends in August, there is a possibility of a total of three broods within one year.

box broods

With blackbirds, it can happen that the female is already laying eggs again while the young that hatched last are still being fed. One speaks of the so-called box brood.

How often does the blackbird breed?

In favorable years, one or, in exceptional cases, even two more broods are possible due to the brooding phases that are shortened even more. In extreme cases, blackbirds can sire and raise offspring up to five times a year instead of three. However, the danger is quite high that the last brood will have a much harder time in the following autumn and winter, since the time needed to gather strength is severely limited.

Notice: So that box broods are possible, the males usually take care of feeding the young birds in the last phase of rearing. This allows the female to return to the nesting site and incubate the newly laid eggs.

frequently asked Questions

Where do blackbirds breed?

The animals usually choose trees or tall shrubs for their nests. Occasionally, however, human facilities such as flower boxes, rain gutters, etc. are used as an adequate substitute.

How do I behave with a blackbird nest in the balcony box?

Blackbirds are often used to humans and seek their closeness. If an animal breeds in your area, you should leave it alone and keep your distance. After just a few weeks, the rearing of the young animals is complete and you can use your usual environment again without restrictions.

How do I avoid destroying a blackbird nest?

There is usually a ban on extensive pruning from March to October. This ban aims precisely at this protection of bird nests. If you observe the legal requirements and watch your garden carefully, you can't do anything wrong.

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