I think one of the biggest surprises to people who come on a walk with me is when I tell them that it is illegal to collect nests and feathers from migratory birds. Yep. Illegal.
“What is the harm?” they want to know. Especially at this time of year when the birds are obviously done using the nest.
There was a time when bird nests, eggs, and even the birds themselves were collected to the point that populations were put at risk. People made room decorations and hats from birds and their nests and eggs. Yikes.
In 1918 the Migratory Bird Treaty Act was passed to protect birds from this kind of exploitation.
You can’t collect nests. So, take pictures instead!