You've outdone yourself, Gerard. Today and yesterday's AD has had the most delightful, thoughtful, beautiful and serendipitous stories and photographs.
I've meant to thank you so many times and haven't. Wish I had but it would get tiresome after a while. But I gotta thank ya for this one. My wife and I are amateur birders (definitely not Audubon Society types). Just call me Birdman, Attorney at Law...; )
I agree Jewel. Will be hard to top these photographs. Amazing how well-disguised the nest was even with the newly hatched chicks in it and especially in such a vulnerable location of a low branch. Thorough series! Thanks very much for sharing this!
When we first moved to our home in Antelope Valley (western Mojave), I was a little bummed we might not enjoy as many hummers as we did at our home in Paradise CA. My wife, ever practical, just said, "let's put out the feeders." Of course within a couple days, several hummers were hitting them regularly. A couple years ago we spotted where hummers were returning in cypress trees out back, and found their nest, just at eye level. We watched with awe as eggs were laid and warmed, then hatched and little ones fed. Unfortunately, that brood came early that year, and hummers laid another clutch of eggs in heat of summer, only to lose them to marauding ants. I think those original young ones still come to our feeders though.
Ah, Paradise, my boyhood home.
That is no housefly, that is a 17 year cicada. Houseflies that big would carry off your sandwich.
My Dad had a hummingbird nest in his back yard and didn't know it. When he trimmed the bushes, he cut down the branch with the nest on it. He noticed the nest when he was bundling up the branches for the trash. It had two little bluish white eggs in it. Even though it had been on the ground for half a day, my Dad nailed the branch back on the bush, just to see what would happen.
The Momma returned without missing a beat. She must have been watching the whole thing. She sat on the eggs, they hatched and she raised the little guys. Pretty amazing.