While in Palm Springs, California recently with hubby, I was excited to find a male Costa Hummingbird and two females on our condo grounds. We were there for the month of March, smack in the middle of their breeding season in southern California, January through May. What an opportunity! Here's what happened:
This little lady was incubating her two white jelly bean eggs when we arrived.
This handsome male Costa was clearly the "important male in the complex", and whose gonna argue with that!!
The tiny nest was about 4 ft off the ground very much in the open on the end of a juniper branch. The female (unlike another a few doors away) left her nest frequently so I could peak in and snap a quick shot. Only one of her eggs hatched. I wondered if she was a young female and not very experienced. The other female stuck to her nest like glue and I never could get a photo of the eggs or the babies.
Here's the hatchling the day or day after the hatch. She is so tiny and helpless, eyes closed and without any feathers. When birds are born helpless, they are called "altricial." If they have feathers and can take care of themselves almost immediately they are called "precocious."
This little baby can't even lift up its head and must be kept warm by Mom's body, a process called "brooding."
Now the hatchling is growing and eyes are open.
Aaand this is the day she fledged...I know because it happened just after I snapped my shutter.
Go to my Hummingbird Collection for digital downloads or the Hummingbird Print Section https://carolblackard.com/collections/hummingbird-prints-1 for excellent quality prints for your walls.