It’s very interesting to watch the process. I always thought of nest building as a construction project: start with big sticks, then smaller sticks, fill in the gaps, add a soft inner cup in the middle, and then declare nest victory. It turns out, however, that it’s more like getting a garment tailored, Gwen spends a lot of time going into incubation position and then pulling the sticks around her so that her body conforms to the shape made by the sticks. Since she’s going to be spending a lot of time back there in the coming weeks, I guess comfort is paramount
It must take a lot of energy to move sticks around with using just wings for transport and a beak for placement. Both Gwen and Stephen are starving all the time. Their diet has pretty much doubled since the fall. During the snoozy season, they don’t even bother to cache leftovers but leave them scattered about. These days there is not a scrap of food to be seen and Stephen spends a great deal of time clinging to the mesh above the door squawking which is his way of complaining about the dining options, portions, and speed of service. Today they consumed 20 superworms, some bison roll, an egg, science diet kibble, and six mice.