Sixteen days after the first egg was laid the first nestling hatched today. The video also captures the first few feeding events:
The little hummingbird continues to incubate her two eggs. Based on information I’ve read the incubation period is nearing its end and soon her offspring will hatch. In the meantime, she patiently sits and waits for her kids to crack open their eggs and begin begging for food.
Yesterday the little hummingbird continued working hard building her nest. She’s using small twigs, leaves, grass seeds and spider silk among other things. Both of the following videos are best viewed in HD and full screen. Here’s yesterdays action:
And here is today’s action. More nest building and her first egg:
I have been keeping a small jar with fur from my dog Ham (now in doggy heaven). This morning I decided to attach some of her fur to a piece of wire and hang it in the flight path of the nesting hummingbird. Sure enough, she found it and started using it in her nest:
Despite the recent absence from my blog I have continued to capture photos and videos of things that interest me. Most recently, I’ve been focused on Sonoran Desert nature. Here are some favorite videos from the last few weeks.
Western Screech Owl and a Red-spotted Toad:
A Datura bloom time-lapse:
A Desert Kingsnake:
Round-tailed ground Squirrel Family:
This time from chrysalis (pupa) to butterfly. It took 9 days for the chrysalis to go through the cell growth and differentiation to become an adult butterfly. Visually, we can see the morphological changes which is magical in itself. What we can’t see are the changes the insect goes through on a cellular level, from larva to pupa and pupa to butterfly. The next photo, taken late at night before the complete metamorphosis, shows the chrysalis clearing to reveal the nearly developed adult butterfly. The video of the whole process follows.
Watching this process I’ve been wondering if the ‘mind’ of the insect remains intact through the whole process: did it know it was a caterpillar, then a chrysalis before becoming a butterfly? Please watch the following video in HD and full screen for best detail. To see the butterfly emerge from the chrysalis, skip to the 4:00 minute mark.
The desert milkweed I’ve recently planted in my yard has continued to support lots of butterfly and caterpillar activity: