I’m checking in on Phoebe 2-3 times a day now since the babies are due to leave the nest before too long. I’m not sure exactly when it will happen but I hope I don’t miss it. It was dark this morning when I first checked in, too dark to see what was going on at the ole nest.
In case you’re just hearing about Phoebe, she’s a Channel Island Allen hummingbird, residing in Orange County, California and quite possibly the best little hummingbird mommy in the world. She’s definitely the most famous!
When I first heard about Phoebe, one baby had hatched and folks were eagerly awaiting the second egg. The other egg never hatched so it was eventually removed from the nest.
In another town about 20 minutes away, a gardener trimmed a bush with a hummingbird nest in it, not realizing the nest was there. The nest was placed back in the bush but the mother hummingbird wouldn’t return to it. The baby was brought to Orange Country where Phoebe lives and placed in her nest.
Phoebe noticed the new addition as soon as she arrived back at the nest and she immediately fed the new baby. ♥
You can watch the video of the baby being added to Phoebe’s nest here:
In this screen shot captured this morning, it’s obvious things are getting pretty snug. That’s a good indication it won’t be too many more days before someone flies the coop. From time to time you’ll see them preening their wings, pulling off the keratin sheaths (pin feathers) covering their wing feathers. Those have to come off before they can leave the nest. Underneath the pin feathers are the soft feathers we’re used to seeing on birdies.
Phoebe stops in regularly to feed the babies. Hummingbird babies eat a combination of bugs and nectar that’s been partially broken down by Mom into something their little bodies can handle.
I noticed after Phoebe left, her pressing down on the babies when she fed them kind of helped pushed the baby that had been up and somewhat out of the nest, back down into the nest. He had been standing up nice and tall earlier in the morning, doing his morning wingercizing (exercising his wings.) Yep, that’s what they call it. I’ve been learning some new words the last couple of weeks while checking in on the babies occasionally. The folks who watch the webcam and chat back and forth are some of the nicest folks and though I haven’t joined in their conversation, I’ve enjoyed reading their commentary and have learned a lot.
After Phoebe finished feeding the babies and left in search of more food, the baby on the left decided to do a little wingercizing of his own. That’s what the blurriness is all about in the pic below. It’s amazing how fast a hummingbird can flap their wings!
For now they are all settled back down, snuggling, sleeping, eating and growing like weeds. It won’t be long now.
I’ll leave you with this cute video of Phoebe in the early days catching a snack as it was flying by. Think of it as room service. 🙂
If you would like to check in on Phoebe from time to time, you’ll find her and the babies here: Hummingbird Nest Cam
I’m off to work on an Easter/Spring table setting for Tablescape Thursday. Happy Birdwatching!