Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Hummingbird Family

Crowded hummingbird nest. Photo by D.K.
A hummingbird's nest consists of small pieces of soft plant fibers, spider silk that is used to weave the fibers and attach the nest to a small twig, some fluffy plant down for lining, and small bits of lichen or moss for exterior decor that will serve as a superb camouflage. With just these few simple materials, the female hummingbird cleverly builds a cup-shaped nest about the size of a walnut. When the nest is finished it will barely be discernable, as it will actually look more like the small knots that are often seen on tree limbs. After the female lays her eggs, she then incubates them until they hatch, which usually takes about 16 days.