Friday, April 8, 2011

A Mother's Journey

 As you may or may not remember, by happenstance I discovered this little hummingbird's nest last month.

Every day I'd watch the little mommy sit patiently on her nest.  All day.  Every day.  She was so patient.  I never saw the eggs, so I was surprised when I saw the two little beaks sticking up one morning.

They were so stinking cute.  All they did was sit there, never making a peep.  That was until momma came around.  As soon as she showed up, they cheeped and peeped like there was no tomorrow.  Oh, and they ate.  

All little momma did, all day long was fly around, watch the nest, and feed her babies.  Remembering the early days of my babies lives, I could completely relate.  She probably was thinking "All these kids do is eat! Can't a momma get a break already?!"  Well, maybe not.  She seemed rather content in her duties.

Well, the babies, they did grow.

 And they did eat.

 And grow.  And eat.

See little momma here?  I just love this picture with her humming wings a'goin.

 And momma was always close by, keeping watch over her little ones (fighting off bigger birds if they got too close).

 And then two days ago I noticed that the little ones weren't so little anymore.  They practically outgrew their nest overnight.  That afternoon, I watched them intently, expecting them to fly away any moment.

And as I watched them, mommy watched me.

They climbed onto each other, nuzzling, flapping and stretching.  It was cramped in there, after all.

 Mommy watched too.  She was ready to show them the ropes once they were ready to venture out into the great big world.

This was the last picture I took of the cuties.  (Taken only yesterday.)
 And then first thing this morning, I looked out and saw little mommy.  I had a feeling this was the day.

 She sat perched, watching her nest.  As I slipped outside, I found her nest was empty.

And little momma just looked on.  She came down and tidied up a bit.  I can't blame her, the kids left an awful mess.
Her nest was empty.  Her duty as a mother fulfilled.  Her babies zooming around somewhere for sure, but wouldn't be returning to the nest.  She incubated them into being, fed their bottomless bellies, protected them, watched over them, admired them from afar, and now the shining moment had arrived.  They were on their own.

One came back, and perched on a branch just below where she was.  It felt like a sweet little, "Thanks mom" sort of moment.
And then he took off, zooming all over our back yard with his brother (too fast for a photo).  I'm sure it is pretty great learning to use such fast wings.

And little momma remained perched for the remainder of the day.
And the nest remained empty.


Jessica said...

What a cute post. How fun that you got all those great pictures of the hummingbirds, so cool to see.

Rhonda said...

So cool!

Christy said...

That is so life right? Such a short time we have and then they learn to fly. :)

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