Often seen as the first sign of spring, the American Robin is easily recognized throughout North America. My first siting this year was in February, as we walked through the Laurel Creek Conservation Area. As winters are getting warmer, the year-round range of this bird seems to be expanding further north. The first Robin in my backyard was sometime in April and seemed particularly interested in the new vegetable garden I was working on.

Canon 80D – 150-600mm – 600mm – f/6.3 – 1/500 – ISO 1000

A second Robin opted to hang out under the bird feeder as the Sparrows and Chickadees dropped seeds on the ground below.

Canon 80D – 150-600mm – 600mm – f/6.3 – 1/500 – ISO 1000

These Robins appeared to be a mated pair as they both flew to a neighbours’ Spruce tree and disappeared from view.

Canon 80D – 150-600mm – 451mm – f/6.3 – 1/500 – ISO 2000

We do a lot of gardening at home and removed the grass from our entire front yard to put in a garden of perennials and annuals. We have a hook that hangs from the front porch and decided to hang a very nice basket of Impatiens. Shortly after, a pair of Robins took up residence and built a nest. They really couldn’t find a better spot away from predators, with the bonus of always being dry. Given the angle, my Canon 80D was too awkward to use for pictures, so I relied on my iPhone XR. I was lucky enough to be able to see the nest from the front door and get pictures when the parents were away. The female laid four perfect blue eggs.

iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25

The baby Robins hatched after about 10 days, with four very pink fuzzy creatures eventually filling the nest.

iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25
iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25
iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25

The Robins grew quickly and their dark feathers started to appear soon after they hatched. Their eyes remained covered for the first week, giving them an eerie, alien-like look.

iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25
iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25
iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25
iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25

Eventually, all four baby Robins left home, leaving behind a heart-shaped nest.

iPhone XR – 4.25mm – f/1.8 – 1/250 – ISO 25