Monday, March 1, 2010

Sunbird, The Nest

Fig. The female Sunbird building the Nest
The nest of sunbirds are architectural marvel. It is generally suspended from a branch at a height of around 10ft from ground. It looks like an oval or oblong purse-shaped pouch with a hooded side-entrance.The collection of nest material and nest building are performed by the female alone with the male only accompanying the female.Before building the nest both male and female first select the appropriate branch of a tree.The female hover around it for a inspection and one can easily confused it with a humming bird. The nest materials consists of soft grasses, dry leaves, barks, pieces of paper and cobwebs.Cobwebs are generally used as a glue material. The nest is about 300 to 600 mm long from tail to tip.The diameter is around 50 to 70 mm at the broadest part.The outer layer consists of coarse materials like dried leaves, barks and even paper and polythene pieces.The inner layers consists of finer materials like cotton fibres or silky substances of seeds and flowers.The nest I observed mostly. The interior of the nest contains the egg chamber which is the thickest portion of the nest i.e 30mm thick.The interior gives utmost comfort to the chicks to grow.On a an average a nest is built with in 10 to 15 days.
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