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There's a humming bird nest in front of my garage

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
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I've been doing a project recently that requires me to enter my garage several times a day.
Every time I used the small door for humans, not the big one for cars, I heard that buzzing/humming sound of a humming bird flying right over my head.
There's a tree branch right there so I thought the hummer just happened to be hanging out there.
But it has happened every time I passed through that door, AND it's spring. :think:

I looked up into the tree several times but couldn't spot a nest.
Today I found it.
It's so tiny! :-o

It's very low in the tree, only a few inches above my head.
I never expected it would build a nest that low, so I was looking way up in the tree.
I saw the hummer in the nest this morning, with a gorgeous sparkling eye and sparkling feathers.

Walking silently and barefoot on the concrete driveway I approached very slowly, looking down to make sure I didn't step on any dry crunchy noisy leaves that might scare it away.
Then I spotted her/him, sitting in the nest, eyes open and watching me, likely sitting on eggs.

Immediately I backed away and left her/him alone.

"Of course, A-hole that I am, I want to get pics, but I'll google around to learn how to be minimally invasive to the birdie family.
Good thing I have that amazing Nikon Nikkor 200mm micro F4 lens.
Designed in the 1960s and built like a tank, I just discovered that it was recently discontinued.
I guess not enough folks wanna part with $2,000 for one lens.
Now I'm extra thrilled I bought a new one a few years back. :dance:

Most macro lenses need to be practically kissing the subject, like 1 or 2 inches away, to get full macro magnification, aka 1:1 ratio.
This lens can take 1:1 closeup pics from farther away - around 10 inches.
That makes it a favorite of well-informed gem photographers and insect photographers because you don't have to get as close as you do with the cheaper shorter focal length lenses, like 55, 60, 85, 105, and 150 mm.

When a lens gets too close insects and birdies are scared away, and diamonds reflect back the huge black monster lens that has to be only a couple inches in front of the diamond.

My camera, a Nikon D-810, can be set to take many pics at pre-set time intervals, like once a day, hour, minute etc.
That way I could just set up the camera on the tripod and leave it. (hope it doesn't get stolen) :(sad:angryfire:
That way a human will not be disturbing the birdie to get each pic.

Wish me, and the birdie family, luck.
 
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rainydaze

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Oooo, good luck! My dad has caught some nice photographs of hummies. He has sat for hours in camoflaged garb near the feeder, waiting for them to come around so he can get some good shots. I don't believe he's ever photographed one in their nest though! What a delightful opportunity, assuming you are able to find a way to do it without disturbing her.
 

eh613c

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What a wonderful surprise! We have hummingbirds that come visit our garden frequently and they are such beautiful creatures. I hope you do get to take picture without disturbing the bird.
 

junebug17

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This is very cool! I love hummingbirds...but I guess who doesn't lol. You're so lucky to be able to see the bird in its cute little nest! Good luck with the pics, would love to see them if this works out.
 

tyty333

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A hummingbird nest in your yard...thats just magical IMO! I hope you are able to get some pics without bothering her. I'd
be thrilled to see some pics!
 

Venti25

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Apr 12, 2012
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Looking forward to hopefully some great pics. Maybe a picture journal?
 

Karl_K

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Your putting out a feeder?
 

canuk-gal

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Apr 19, 2004
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HI:

What a treat! I luv those little angels!

cheers--Sharon
 

pearlsngems

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Lucky you!! We put out a feeder beginning mid-April each year, and we see hummers drinking at it, but have never seen a nest.
 

seaurchin

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Nov 2, 2012
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Lucky Kenny! Good luck with the photos. Good thing you have that lens. My (iphone camera) hummingbird photos were just blurs.
 

kenny

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Your putting out a feeder?

I considered it, but I think it would attract other hummers and mom wouldn't appreciate that.
Where we live many neighbors already have lots of flowering plants.
Plus I suspect they select a nest location based on good food availability.
 

kenny

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More tips for anyone photographing hummers.

 
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doberman

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I want to see the photos. We have hummingbird feeders that do a brisk business in the summer and we always manage to get some good shots. I love hummingbirds!
 

kenny

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In the last hour I've learned more about hummers than in my last 60 years.

The nest is made from decomposing and fresh leaves, twigs, flakes of lichens, etc.
Mom binds it all together with silk she steals from spider webs.
Astonishing! ... In the bottom pic you can see the spider web silk.

Mating finishes dad's work for reproduction ... Love em and leave em.
Nest building, egg incubation, and all chick feeding is done solely by the female.
Sound familiar? :angryfire:
Nature, ya know. :naughty:

Momma already seems quite comfortable with my presence and appears unbothered by my tripod, and ladder.

What follows is camera geek talk.
If that's not your thing just scroll down to the pic.

This is the first of many pics.
Over time they will get better, but this is a starting point just to get something up.
Here's why it will be the worst of the thread.

In the days & weeks to come I can gradually move the camera closer and only take pics when the light is better.
This was taken in the evening with dim light.
Nice cameras can amplify the light, kind of like adjusting the volume of music.
When the light is brighter I can lower the ISO setting; this was taken a high ISO of 1000.
The higher the ISO the more grain or noise in the pic.
It's analogous to volume of music ... if you crank up the volume high enough during a quiet part of the music you will hear the hissing sound of the audio system's noise floor.
The lowest noise/grain is when using lowest ISO setting of 64, but that requires the bright light of the mid day sun.

With any camera you get the sharpest pics by using all of your camera's sensor's pixels instead of cropping into the diamond or bird after the pic is taken.
You ask, how exactly do you use all your camera's pixels? You either move in closer or use a lens with higher telephoto power (higher mm number).

My telephoto lens is only 200mm, I wish I had Nikon's 800mm telephoto lens, but it's $13,600. :blackeye:
So I have to just move closer, but only gradually as momma gets used to me.

When I have more light I can not only lower the ISO setting for less noise but I can do 2 other things.
1. Use a smaller aperture for better depth of focus.
2. Use a faster shutter speed to stop the tree's motion caused by the breeze.

Both pics below are the same pic.
The first is the whole pic or everything that the sensor saw, and the second is a detail cropped-in after the pic was taken.

Notice how small the nest is in the first pic.
That means fewer of my sensor's 36 million pixels were used ... so the resolution suffers compared to if I took the same pic with a higher-magnification telephone lens or moved in closer.



Ethel1 unc.png



Ethel1.png
 
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kenny

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Doesn't it look like Ethel is giving old Kenny the wary side-eye? :???::errrr::think:
If there was a caption she'd be saying, "And what exactly do you think YOU'RE up to?!?"
Maybe DF told her I'm a liberal. :knockout:

I don't yet know how colorful she is since I have not seen her out of her tiny home, except darting around at Mach 3 speed.
But it looks like her tail back there is green, maybe with some red.
Time will tell.

side eye ethel.png
 
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LilAlex

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Looks cozy -- nice photo.

We live in hummingbird land and just watched one (several?) during dinner. They're kinda like bees -- we never know if we are seeing the same ones over and over. But lots of them look different...
 

kenny

Super_Ideal_Rock
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Apr 30, 2005
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30,212
I took my SO out to see our guests.
He let out a big long Awwwwwwwwwww. :kiss2:

Now he's all concerned she, and her eggie weggies, will be cold at night, and even suggested we could put a portable heater under her nest.

Uhm ... no Dear. :doh:
You know what they say ... It's not nice to fool with mother nature ...

 
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