How to relocate a birds nest with eggs

Bird nests are integral to birds, they are a safe, comfortable and a cosy place to lay and incubate their eggs. A nest is where the hatchlings will hatch and spend the first few months of life. Unfortunately, birds don’t always build nests in the most convenient of places for humans and because of this, we need to remove them. This article looks at how to relocate a bird’s nest with eggs.

If your goal is to save the eggs then its best to move the nest after the eggs have hatched. If you move them while the eggs are still in the nest then the mother may abandon them. In addition, it’s illegal to move an active nest

How to relocate a birds nest with eggs

You may have found a bird’s nest with eggs somewhere on your property and would like to relocate it, but if you care about the well being of the bird and you don’t want to do something illegal then you shouldn’t be moving the nest while the eggs are still inside.

Experts advise that you wait to remove a nest until after the eggs have hatched and the baby birds have left the nest. Disturbing or moving a bird’s nest with eggs most often causes the adult bird to abandon the nest. In addition, over 800 birds are protected in North America, it is illegal to move or interfere with an active nest, an active nest is a nest that has eggs or a nest that the female is still sitting in.

A better time to move a birds nest would be before the birds have completed the nest, while the nest is in the early stages. It would be best to remove or destroy it before the birds get a chance to finish and nest in it.

The best decision would be to contact a local rescue organisation, the organization’s staff will be more equipped to move a birds nest and to do it in the most effective way possible.

Can you legally move a birds nest without eggs?

In the united states and some other countries, moving a bird’s nest with eggs is considered illegal. Some bird species are highly protected, and any attempt to destroy or move their nests with eggs can attract hefty penalties from the government and wildlife authorities. However, if the bird’s nest is without eggs, it’s legally ok to move it to a different location.

Can birds find their nest if moved?

If you aren’t comfortable with where a bird’s nest is situated and would like to do something about it, experts advise that you either move it to a nearby location or do not move it at all. Birds are usually very familiar with the surroundings where they build their nests so they will likely find it. But if you place the nest at a location farther from where it used to be, the bird might not find its home.

Do birds abandon their nest if you touch it?

Birds do not have a great sense of smell like cats or dogs and won’t know if a human touched their nest while they were away. But if a bird sees you getting close to its nest or touching it, the bird will likely abandon the nest, even if there are eggs or chicks in it. Birds may build their nests close to humans, but that’s not to say they aren’t scared of us.

Should you remove old bird nests?

There are no laws that prohibit the removal of empty and old bird nests. So if you find a bird nest that has no eggs or chicks, it’s totally ok to remove it from your property. Nests can be a host to various parasites and bacteria so moving it will be to your benefit and clean up your garden.  

Most bird species do not reuse old nests. When it’s time to lay another set of eggs, they usually build a new nest elsewhere. Thus if you own a nest box, you can remove the nest and clean up the place after the fledgelings are gone.


In conclusion, it is illegal to move a bird’s nest with eggs in them, this is considered to be an active nest. Birds can’t tell if we’ve touched the nest but will be aware if you moved it. Birds will find the nest if you’ve moved it to a different location in the garden but they likely won’t find it if you move it far away.

If you enjoyed this article then you may also be interested in other bird related articles. Here are some articles that you may be interested in: can you hatch eggs with a heating pad, why do birds puff up their feathers, can pigeons see at night, how to sterilize a birds nest

How to relocate a birds nest with eggs
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