April 21, 2014

Medina
Partly sunny
66°F

New nest of neighbors in Brunswick Hills Twp.

Two hummingbird chicks wait for their mother to return to the nest on the branch of a maple tree in Patti Hobe’s front yard in Brunswick Hills Township on Wednesday evening. (GAZETTE PHOTO BY LOREN GENSON)

A hummingbird has decided to raise her family, nestled in a maple tree, outside a Brunswick Hills Township home.

Patti Hobe said she spotted the hummingbird nest containing two chicks from the dining room window of her home.

Hobe said the mother returns regularly to feed and check on the chicks.

The nest is made from spider silk and pieces of lichen, said Harvey Webster, director of Wildlife Resources at the Cleveland Museum of Natural History. He said the outside of the nest often is camouflaged small pieces of leaves or thistle.

“The spider-silk allows them to create a nest bowl with one really neat advantage — it’s expandable,” Webster said.

The nest is designed to stretch and grow as the babies get bigger. He said Hobe’s hummingbirds are likely the Ruby-Throated Hummingbird, the only nest-building bird native to Ohio and named for the ruby coloring on the male. Female hummingbirds build the nest and then incubate the eggs alone without help from their mate.

Webster said after the chicks hatch, they remain in the nest for about three weeks before they take flight.

He said the chicks in Hobe’s yard still have some feathers that show the chicks are very young, but they’re getting big enough to leave the nest soon.

He estimated the chicks will fly from their nest within the next week.

Contact reporter Loren Genson at (330) 721-4063 or lgenson@medina-gazette.com.