We've been watching a pair of coots build and maintain a nest for several weeks. It's in a marina so little in the way of natural vegetation but undisturbed unless boats come and go.
A week ago four (that we know of) eggs hatched and we started to see the babies following their parents around.
However, during the week, the nest has been disturbed (wind and rain combined with boat movement) and was drifting, and today we noticed it had drifted out towards the river; we then watched a boat go past completely oblivious to the nest and watched the parents and two babies dive out of the way (no sign of the other two).
Although the nest itself still looks viable (to an untrained eye!) it has now drifted out towards the river and the two coots and their young have headed back in to the marina, where they have little in the way of cover.
Is this just "nature" or is there anything we can do to support them?
Unfortunately it is just nature - if the chicks had already started following their parents then the nest isn't really needed so losing it shouldn't be an issue. Sounds as if the parents haven't really chosen the best of places to nest and withour adequate cover the chicks will be very vulnerable to predators like fish and gulls. Not a lot you can do unfortunately.
I suspected as much but thought it worth asking. We've been watching them a while now and they seem like part of the family...
As said there is little you can do other than cross your fingers and hope for the best.