Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Weaver Magic

When I saw this Masked weaver starting to weave a nest right in front of our bedroom door & window, I decided to "document" the process by regularly taking photos of this busy little weaver's progress.

The nest starts as a circle & the weaver either "works" on the in- or the outside, using blades of grass, which this bird "collects" from our garden.

My intention, to record the various stages of the building process, was thwarted by the busy builder - when next I checked, the circle had developed into a near-complete nest! Although I was aware how quickly a nest is built by weavers, I was still taken by surprise that all it took to reach this stage, was no more than a couple hours.

The process didn't go unnoticed - I was "joined" by a female weaver or two watching the nest "unfold".

Eventually a female weaver decided to inspect the nest "at close quarters" - since I know that female weavers tend to destroy a nest they instinctively feel doesn't represent a "safe haven" for them and their eggs, I was expecting the worst! To my relief, it only turned out to be a passing visit from a female & the male could continue constructing its nest instead of having to start from scratch.

Unabated the male did just that - he continued the process of weaving.

Just for interest's sake: this is day 2 of the building process.

Outside & inside - the male Masked weaver continues to weave his "magic".

When late in the afternoon (Day 2) I saw the male amongst the Bottle-brush flowers, I thought he was looking for much-needed sustenance after a day of hard work. After all birds like weavers, bulbuls, sparrows & white-eyes often "descend" on this tree. But the male weaver wasn't looking for food! Instead he was on a mission to collect leaves to "decorate" the inside of his nest!

And this is the result - camera in hand I had a peek. Although weavers use blades of grass to built their nests, they "soften" the inside by obviously using leaves of various sizes & from a variety of trees.

Another "statistic": the nest "hangs" between 1 & 2 meter above the ground.

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