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Sunday, June 17, 2012

I found a hummingbird nest with a hummingbird in it!

Yesterday I was out in the backyard and inexplicably looked up and saw this: A female Anna's Hummingbird quietly sitting on her nest! It was so tiny I honestly don't know how I saw it! I'd say the nest is about the size of a large walnut shell.

I went back into the house to get my camera and when I came out she flew away.

She waited a minute and once she was confident I meant no harm she came back.

She left and returned to her nest twice giving me a chance to play with my camera settings. This image was taken with a fast shutter speed (1/320) but even then she's a blur as she comes in for her landing.

Photographing her was a little tricky because the nest is tucked into the tree a bit so that it's in shade requiring a higher ISO setting.

This image was taken with a slower shutter speed (1/200). It's blurred but in a different way. Aside from the bird moving, the branch was also constantly bouncing to and fro with the wind.

I'm going to get a lot of practice photographing her nest in the coming weeks if she lays eggs!

Of course my curiosity got the better of me and I had to go online to learn how hummingbirds build their nests because her's looked as if she'd spun a web over it to bind it together. Turns out the female uses many components during the building process. The first four of which are visible in this little hummingbird's nest:

• Moss
• Lichen
• Spider silk - To make the nest elastic to stretch with the growing chicks
• Feathers
• Plant down from thistles, dandelions or cattails
• Cotton fibers
• Small bits of bark or leaves
• Fuzz or hairs from leaves

She also added a tiny white flower. So cute!

1 comment:

  1. omigosh this is amazing!! Hummingbirds are tiny as they are and to spot one nesting that is so cute. I can't wait to see more pictures and hope she will lay eggs and see the chicks hatch! Its amazing how she constructs the nest isn't it, I never knew they used spider silk. How!? Amazing...


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