This is a follow-up to the recent nature note about the killdeer and her nest of four eggs.
The incubation period is 24-28 days. These babies hatched in 25 days. The four in the nest are just two hours old.
An “egg tooth” can be seen as a white spot at the tip of each little bill. The chick uses it to break out of the shell. The “tooth” is present for only a few hours after hatching.
As with all birds, adults are not able to help chicks with hatching. The baby that’s walking is a day old.
That morning the adults brought the chicks from the driveway to the side of our house, a hike of about 200 yards! They were showing them how to find food.
Later in the afternoon the four little ones huddled under momma and took a timeout. It had been a busy morning and they were tired. They are cute little things and have the same color pattern as the adults.
The young birds will not be able to fly for 25 days and during that time they will be vulnerable to predators such as snakes, cats, hawks, owls and others. It’s a wonder any survive.