Nature is absolutely beautiful, especially during this time of the year, when mating season begins. However, as you begin to spruce up your yard for gardening season, don’t forget to be careful not to cause any harm to its ecosystems, especially these adorably tiny hummingbird nests.
If you aren’t aware of how extremely tiny a hummingbird’s nest can be, it is likely that you have never seen one. According to Birds and Blooms, similar to a crown jewel, these nests are one of the great wonders that nature has to offer. Without closer inspection, they may appear to be just another bump on the branch. Large leaves and other branches may conceal them from your view, but if you look close enough, what you will find is extraordinary.
Typically, female hummingbirds will build these thimble sized nests 10-90 feet high in trees or shrubs. While building her nest, she will make it into a compact and spongy cup that can stretch as her young begins to grow. Weaved into her magnificent work of art you will find spider silk, leaves, and plant fibers. Contained inside of her nest you will find the smallest of eggs that are similar in size to kidney beans. However, despite their small size, she will only lay about two eggs which she will sit on for 15-18 days.
In a series of Tweets, the U.S Fish and Wildlife society explained that it is of the utmost importance that we check for these nests before trimming trees and shrubs this spring.
Hummingbird eggs are tiny! Check for nests before you trim trees & shrubs this spring. (Photo: Jon Heale, USFWS) pic.twitter.com/y4SOCJnu3V
— US Fish and Wildlife (@USFWS) May 17, 2016
They also created a fact sheet on their Facebook page, warning gardeners and yard keepers to keep a good lookout for this precious cargo. The Facebook post has been shared over 266,000 times by Facebook users interested in protection the Hummingbird eggs. Please do the same, as many people do not understand how delicate the nest can be.
Oftentimes, Hummingbirds will build their nest on the “Y” or crossed branches of a tree or bush. This is to create a good solid base for her young. If you see a grown Hummingbird flying and landing repeatedly to the same portion of a branch, it is likely that this will be where she builds her nest.
Also, if you have any bright and colorful flowers that create nectar, it is likely that Hummingbirds will flock to the area to create their habitat.
Please double check your garden, trees, and shrubs before you begin your yearly yard maintenance. If you do find one of these nests, you may have to ignore that area for now, so that you can save the lives of dozens of these teeny-tiny little lives. However, it will be worth it, knowing that you did your part to preserve one of the most glorious aspects of nature. Furthermore, you will be rewarded by seeing these itty-bitty babies grow into adulthood, and it doesn’t get much better than that!