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Seeing as griffins are much bigger creatures than birds, plenty more twigs and sticks would be required and so larger size too. So how would griffins go about collecting materials for their nest? One of the ways I have pictured is a griffin flying up to some tree and stripping it of its branches, while possibly claiming a small rodent as a meal at the same time :).

These particular griffins have the head, wings and front talons of an eagle and the back legs and tail of a lion. They like high places such as mountains, abandoned towers, castles etc to set their nests upon and to watch over the surrounding lands. They do lay eggs which is why nests are necessary and finally valuable small treasures or item they have can be hidden underneath the nest for safe keeping.

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  • $\begingroup$ Why not look at how large raptors build nests? Especially eagles since griffons have the head and wings of an eagle? $\endgroup$ Jan 18 at 19:20
  • $\begingroup$ To get the stuff together to build their dwelling, griffins go out and steal furniture and beach umbrella's from our gardens. They pick these up with their claws and fly away. $\endgroup$
    – Goodies
    Jan 18 at 22:54
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    $\begingroup$ As griffins are portrayed as fully sentient-level intelligences.... Maybe they build their nests by hiring a building contractor, the same way most of us do? $\endgroup$
    – PcMan
    Jan 19 at 9:10
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    $\begingroup$ I propose including additional detail in your question, such as the purpose of the nests (securing eggs and/or young, providing adults shelter from the elements, status symbols among griffins, etc.?), as well as habitat and available resources, vs. desirable resources for construction. This will help provide moth focus and detail in answers given. $\endgroup$
    – Harthag
    Jan 19 at 16:29
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    $\begingroup$ @Goodies It doesn't, which is exactly why I suggested including clarification on that $\endgroup$
    – Harthag
    Jan 19 at 16:46

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Griffins collect carcasses.

bird builds nest with carcass

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=21ybnsw3Zvo

Carcasses near the nests of small birds can be bad for the nestlings, because scavengers like crows and foxes are fond of eggs and baby birds as well.

Griffin nestlings have the opposite take as regards the arrival of delicious foxes and crows. Griffin adults favor carcasses for nest building because between meat deliveries by the parents the nestlings can spend their time pecking up delicious maggots as well as surprising larger scavengers attracted by the meat. Also a carcass that is still relatively intact offers the possibility of a large amount of nest material in one trip.

A griffin nest will usually be composed of several carcasses. These are often discovered by the griffin, the same way this nest building osprey discovered what looks to me like a dead osprey (!) Some griffins purposefully kill things for use as nesting material. Other smaller, trespassing griffins are prime candidates for this use.

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  • $\begingroup$ But nests themselves are not build on carcasses (alone), which is what the question is about. $\endgroup$
    – Joachim
    Jan 19 at 10:15
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    $\begingroup$ @Joachim: I agree osprey nests are still mostly sticks. I propose that griffin nests are built on carcasses alone. $\endgroup$
    – Willk
    Jan 19 at 13:17
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    $\begingroup$ Aha! A bed of rotting flesh. Sounds adequately monstrous. $\endgroup$
    – Joachim
    Jan 19 at 14:33
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They'll mostly just need more and larger twigs and branches for the structure of their nests, but prefer to use natural formations such as scarps, slopes, and banks (at high altitudes, nevertheless), and - like most birds - collect straw and hay and anything else they can get their claws on to make their nests more comfortable and safe enough to lay their eggs: feathers, leaves, cloth, wool and fur of their victims or found, &c.

This will be collected like other winged creatures collect it: with their beaks and paws.
As they have strong beaks and neck muscles, branches can easily be snapped off of trees when they're not readily found. They might even use their similarly strong paws to break branches during flight.

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No need to.... The griffin won't need to gather material to build a dwelling high up and safe, it is perfectly capable of defending its young on the ground. According to myth, griffins have a dwelling somewhere in the badlands or desert.

Also I would note it's very unlikely a griffin would have been an egg-layer. Birds don't lay eggs with their wings and head. It would rather copulate, like lions do.. give birth.. and defend their young in deep thickets or dense grass, heavy riverside woods and rock outcrops. They don't need additional material.

https://sciencing.com/do-lions-shelter-wild-7625737.html

enter image description here

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  • $\begingroup$ The question assumes that griffins build nests, regardless of 'need to'. Living in areas of sparse vegetation adds to the difficulty of the question, as posed, rather than invalidates it. Gorillas don't lay eggs either, but they still build nests. Platypus (platypuses? platypodes? platypi?) are mammals, but they still lay eggs. $\endgroup$
    – Harthag
    Jan 19 at 16:21
  • $\begingroup$ @Harthag I think it;'s a minor point, there are 2 factors: the term itself may be my fault indeed (nests contain eggs, in my language) so I would prefer to call it a "dwelling".. and also the fact this animal does not need to build a nest out of twigs in a protected place, the reason was stated in this answer. I could have put my question-comment as an answer, but that would have been a little short. $\endgroup$
    – Goodies
    Jan 19 at 16:50
  • $\begingroup$ Similar to your "dwelling" reference, the original question had me thinking of things like Beaver lodges as well. It's quite 'nest-like', much larger, and serves some similar purposes of more traditional 'nests' as a dwelling. And that was another reason for my comment for clarification to the asker, above. $\endgroup$
    – Harthag
    Jan 19 at 16:57
  • $\begingroup$ @Harthag I've googled around for depictions of the griffin last night. There are several types of griffin, depending on the source of the artwork. The bestiary griffin I show is really lion-like. I agree with you on the clarifications needed.. especially on habitat. That is very relevant for material gathering. $\endgroup$
    – Goodies
    Jan 19 at 17:07

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