Hummingbird nest - once in a lifetime event!

Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

My next door neighbor and I both share a love of hummers. With feeders in both yards and evergreen trees that they love, we usually have a large number of hummers. Last night, my neighbor came running down the hill with a yardstick in her hand, screaming "come here!" I was tempted to grab a hoe, as I thought maybe she had a snake!

She had been following the flight path of her hummers and found a nest that is about 7 ft off of the ground, attached to a tree limb. She had the yard stick in hand in order to direct my attention to the correct spot.

I was very happy for Mary Emma, who had lost her husband about 3 months ago. This was the first time that I have seen her beautiful smile in a while.

Needless to say, we're having a photo party this evening. We going to set up with lawn chairs, skeeter spray, iced tea, and our zoom lens. With luck, I hope to get some good photos of this ruby throated hummer nest. Keep your fingers crossed - - will post if the lighting is good enough. Nat

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

That is really cool! I've seen images of baby hummers, but never a nest around here :)

That is wonderful. I hope you get some good pictures.

Penfield, NY(Zone 6a)

How exciting. I have heard that the hummers use spider web material to line the inside of the nest and the nests are ever so tiny.

Greenville, SC(Zone 7a)

I'm so happy to hear that Emma got a good smile and excitement from that hummingbirds nest, I'm sure she really needed that after her recent loss!
Tell her "Congrats" for me, I've been looking for the nest's of hummingbirds for years now, And have yet to find one!!LOL! Look forward to the photo when you get one. Have fun at your photo party! ( I'll keep my fingers crossed for you! )

Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

Iris, Mary Emma said to keep on looking for nests. She has examined the trees where the hummers go when leaving her feeders for YEARS.

No picture to post today. My digital camera didn't have a strong enough zoom (makes me want to go out and buy a new one!). So, I had to use my 35MM with the larger zoom lens. I am going to mail off my film today and should have pictures back in a few days. Mary Emma dropped her camera and broke the lens yesterday. So she was very happy to see me coming with camera in hand.

Once the mama bird got used to us, she would let you walk up close to the branch where her nest was. Using my 6ft DH as a guide, we now think that the nest is about 8 ft off of the ground. DH suggested that we take a ladder and try to get some photos more at eye level.

Here is a site that shows pictures of ruby throated hummer nests. Ours is similar with lichens covering the outside bound with spider webs. Pretty cool, huh?

Bodrum, Turkey(Zone 10a)

extremely cool...I cant wait to see your photos.

Lutz, FL(Zone 9b)

What an exciting find! I can't wait to see your pictures either

High Desert, CA(Zone 8a)

here is a nesting hummingbird in the tree next to the back of the house. i took this the other day. i can not come any closer for fear of the hummer to fly away.

Thumbnail by MaVieRose
Brewers, KY(Zone 6b)

How neat! I too have been looking for years to find a nest. Ma vie, thanks for the pic.
Nat, I can't wait to see your pics!

Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

I don't have my 35mm pictures back yet - - -they should be much clearer than my digital ones, as I have a good zoom lens. BUT here's one for now. The white dot in the center is her eye. The nest is under a canopy of trees, so the area is pretty dark. Maybe, just maybe, if the sun comes out this weekend - - I'll have an opportunity for better photos.

She is already grown accustomed to visitors, and doesn't fly away now when you approach the nest. I can't wait to see her feeding her babies.

Thumbnail by nathalyn
Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

What kind of hummer is yours? All we have here in Tennessee are Ruby Throated, with an occasional Rufous. Nat

Brundidge, AL(Zone 8b)


Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

Springsong, While I have heard of a few that stay year round, the vast majority of our hummers migrate south for the winter. I started seeing hummers this year around Mid-April. But I usually don't have a lot of hummers at my feeders until mid-July.

They are special little guys I stay outside a lot, they are fairly tame.

Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

I have a pretty good photo. See this posting.

Surry, VA(Zone 7b)

Nathalyn, thank you so much for starting this thread. It never dawned on me to go out and look for any nests. I've watched which direction they fly after visiting the feeders, but didn't even consider the idea of a nest being built in one of our trees. I've noticed the number of hummers increase during the summer season - epecially when it comes to refilling the feeders - but I never put 2 + 2 together until your post. I guess it's time to take a look with the binoculars. :o)

Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

Carol, they look like wasp or bee nests when the mama is not in them. Makes me wonder if I've seen one before and didn't put 2 + 2 together. Sounds like neither one of us adds well...LOL

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Any babies yet?

Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

Mary - - no babies yet. But I read that they sit on the eggs for almost 3 weeks. I'm off work this week - - so I hope to do some nest watching!

Villa Rica, GA(Zone 7a)

Quick question here, and excuse me if it has already been asked. But does the hummer quit feeding when she sits on the eggs?? I was just wondering because it has been a pretty good while since I have seen my regular hummers and I thought maybe they are nesting and hatching out the babies right about now.

Montgomery, AL(Zone 8a)

No, she does not quit feeding. She must have nectar & insects to survive.


Villa Rica, GA(Zone 7a)

O ok I was thinking more on the lines of don't laugh but like chickens LOL OK stop laughing!! But you know how a hen will stop feeding and sit on her eggs until they hatch? Guess I was raised too far out in the country! LOL But ok then this leads me to yet another question then. Don't the eggs have to stay warm to hatch? Then how does she keep them warm while she is out feeding on nectar and etc? Sounds like I need to be looking all this up on the net, but I just thought someone here could explain it a bit better than the net.

High Desert, CA(Zone 8a)

sorry to respond late, i was out of town for a much needed break. the common and frequent hummer here is Anna's hummingbird , during bird migration, occassionally we would have migrating hummers around. last month, i saw a nice lavender throated hummer while i was watering plants. it was so colorful, i wish to see it again.

no babies here either, unless they were hatch and gone while i was on vacation. i looked at the nest yesterday and no one was there.

Southwestern, OH(Zone 6b)

I had always suspected that the little nests I find when the leaves come off of our trees were Hummer Nests, thank you for confirming that for me!!

We have probably around 20 here right now, we love watching them, spend hours in the evening just sitting on the decks or on the porch. I planted a butterfly bush in front of one of my porches, and they love it, they sit in it to guard their feeders.

We have 10 feeders up, and a gallon of nectar always in the fridge for fillups.


Knoxville, TN(Zone 7a)

I have a BABY! I don't know if there is more than one - but we can see one little beak. With all the rain we're having, I am unable to sit and watch. Please, sun come out!

Baker City, OR(Zone 5b)

Oh how exciting! Be sure to take some pictures when you can. Wouldn't it be something to have one of those cams that take a photo every so often and we could all watch!! Maybe some wildlife society would be willing to mount their cam to watch this nest next year.... (wishful thinking). Wouldn't that be fun!!

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