One winter we had a wind storm, I saw a birds nest getting blown down the road. I ran out to rescue it. It now sits in my window along with another tiny nest.
Every year I have a nest in the front vines on the porch. So far I have had a nest in 4 different locations in the vines. One year two were occupied.
A Robin comes every year and I have no idea if its the same bird or not. One year I know it was a different lady because she was upset every time we opened the door. She eventually abandoned the nest. Usually the lady Robin ignores us as we come and go. I have taken pictures of her and as long as I don't get too familiar with her she stays put. One year I think the Chipmunk got the eggs.
The actual nests are works of wonder. I mean they do it all with their beaks. Tenderly and carefully orchestrated.
I mean, look at it. Its just wonderful. The birds use a lot of materials from mud to feathers to grass and straw. I put out clippings from my dogs and hair from my brush. They will use them all. When I had a horse the birds would love the hair we brushed off of the horses. So don't waste things, think of the birds.
You can put out a box for the nesting materials. Including shredded papers.
Some birds build tiny nests that are hard to find. Like the Hummingbirds.
I remember as a child I would search the hedges for nests. There were always some as my dads garden was surrounded by hedges and shrubs. Birds loved it. I sometimes even dream about looking for them. I would love to watch as the eggs hatched and watch the babies as they grew. One year a Blackbird nested in the Lilac bush (or was it a Thrush) and the babies kept falling out of the nest. It was like popcorn. I no more got one captured and put back than the others would pop out. I finally gave up. I was afraid the cats would get them but Mum bird was close by and got them rounded up and into the bushes. I learned about "fledging"
Every nest is different, one of a kind. Each bird species has a different style of nest. Some are ground nesters and some prefer trees, others shrubs. Some birds are opportunistic and will use an open mail box, a wreath on the porch or anything that takes the fancy. In every case they are made to that species specification and design. I feel sorry for mother Robin when it rains. She keeps her nest and eggs/babies dry and weathers it best she can. The oils in the feathers make her waterproof but a nest can flood, so she makes sure that does not happen by filling the space with her body and wings.
In the winter the nests are obvious and can be seen sadly abandoned in the trees. Good time to appreciate them and admire their architecture.