Viewing sunnyg's Garden Diary: Feb 09 - Hummingbird Nest!
Sunday, February 8, 2009
Hummingbird Nest!!!We discovered this little hummer defending her nest last night. I've never seen a nest before, and was not expecting to see one so early in the year! Between the recent rain, and a little freeze that crisped up my fuchsias etc., there just isn't much food out there for her to eat. We made an emergency hummingbird feeder run today (I usually just stick to flowers), and hope she and her eggs survive okay, as it's a bit stormy out there again tonight.
Can you spot the nest?
Here is a link to the thread on the Hummingbird and Butterfly Forum: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/950657/#new
Here is a link to info on baby hummingbirds: http://www.worldofhummingbirds.com/baby.php
Monday, February 9, 2009Hereís todayís update (and yes, Iíve spent a bit of time spying on the nest LOL). Mama hummingbird found the hummingbird feeder, so that is good. Itís sunny and very windy today, and itís amazing how she is able to hold onto the nest while it sways madly in the windÖvery neat to watch! Hereís a pic of her from this morning:
Monday, February 9, 2009
First peek at the eggsIíve also discovered that I can take pics through the upstairs window, and while the window doesnít open so Iím shooting through glass, I will be able to check out the babies from up there. I was able to take a peek at the eggs when she left the nest for a few minutesÖ.wow, they are so, so tiny!
Monday, February 9, 2009Unfortunately, this is the best quality Iím able to record right now, from my upstairs spying spot (1 pm). Hopefully different light conditions and less wind will allow for some clearer pics in the future, especially when the babies hatch!
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
She has an ID!KaperC gave me the following info on my mama hummer, and several others confirmed the ID:
It's probably an Anna's, unless you get different species up there I'm not used to. Between now and May is the height of their breeding season, though they can start as early as mid-December. Two eggs, generally 2 (poss 1-3) days apart, but if she starts incubating them after the second one, they will hatch the same day. Eggs are less than 1/2 inch and weigh less than 1/2 gram. 15-20 days incubation, during which she will sit on the eggs 60-80% of the time. She'll turn the eggs now and again and sit especially tight if it is cold or rainy. You might see her turning them with her feet and bill, or with her bill while hovering outside the nest.
Fascinating little creatures. The book I have is "Hummingbirds - Their Life and Behavior - a Photographic Study of the North American Species" by Esther Quesada Tyrrell and Robert A. Tyrrell. It has the most fantastic photos.
Tuesday, February 10, 2009
Oh PoopToday I learned what happens when I get too close to the nest. The way we originally discovered the nest, was when this one hummingbird kept flying at me somewhat aggressively over and over again. It was just getting dark, and we were out front getting ready to transplant a tree. Iíve never seen a hummingbird act that way before, and it really seemed like she was protecting something. In fact, we were standing right below her nest! She seems to generally tolerate my presence so far, but when she gets riled up she will even fly up and buzz the second story window and ďget in my faceĒ through the glass. I also have a hummingbird fly over and peek in the bedroom balcony door on occasion (different side and level of the house from my spying spot). Just who is actually spying on whom, I wonder? ;-)
I was down below taking pics of her and tripped, which startled her. She flew straight up, high over meÖ.and then pooped directly on my head! I got the message loud and clear, and went back into the house. I snuck up to the window and peeked out to make sure everything was okay, and she buzzed the window! After showering (hummingbird poop, remember?), I spied on her again, she was right back on her nest, like nothing had happened. I deliberately left her alone the rest of the day because I donít want to traumatize her, and between being sick and all the stormy weather weíve been having, I havenít gone out the front door since. Itís a good thing we have a garage door too, thatís all I can say, otherwise weíd be trapped in our house by a hummingbird! LOL.
Here is a pic I took, seconds before she pooped on my head!
Friday, February 13, 2009
Leaf blowers and other dangers...The bush where mama hummer built nest is technically on HOA property outside my front door (townhouse), and the landscapers came this morning with their leaf blowers and other assorted scary and potentially dangerous items. When I heard the leaf blowers start up, I ran outside and tried to explain to them to leave the bush alone. After a call to their boss, I think the area is now safe. Whew.
We're finally getting some much needed rain here on and off, and even got some hail today. Mama is hanging tight, and I managed to take a hurried pic of her drinking from the feeder we put up, but that was it for today's pics.
Sunday, February 15, 2009
horrible end to the hummingbird storyWe are in the midst of a big storm with rain and heavy winds. I looked out the window this morning, and the nest looked empty and mama wasn't around. I went outside, and found the two little eggs, broken on the cement walkway below the nest. I know it's unwise to get so attached and excited about these kind of things, but I did.
Here is the empty nest: