Thursday, February 21, 2013
A Nesting Bird Bonanza!
The doves were really out to please at the Fiesta grounds today. Yesterday I saw a pair of Mariana Fruit Doves and thought they might have or be creating a 'nest'. - Today I just looked upward to search out the Fruit dove I saw yesterday when the male flew right over to her – if I’m right about who is which (the coloring of males and females is either the same or too similar for me to tell). That saved me from having to search to spot her. He didn’t stay long but as far as I was concerned he’d done me a nice favor. A couple of days ago I spotted a male White-throated Ground Dove. Watching it I soon decided it was in attendance of a female on a nest. The nest is just was very loosely knit assemblage of long ironwood needles. But yesterday I could not find that nest anywhere. I figured they had just been ‘house hunting’ and opted for a different neighborhood. While watching the Mariana Fruit Dove I hadn’t much hope of sighting the White-throated Ground Dove but “Lo and Behold!” A male flew over and perched close enough to the Fruit dove that I got off a shot including them both. He then began flying back and forth between two other trees and that me helped locate their nest. It is a tree away from where I thought I saw it the other day. So either I was looking in the wrong tree yesterday or what I really think is they chose a different spot. Unlike the Fruit dove male this one makes many quick trips to the nest and away. And in each tree he’d walk, hop or flutter from branch to branch. - Gradually he would approach the nest and briefly join her there. While the White-throated nest is merely a large mass of loosely assembled needles it does keep them much better hidden from the ground – thus from the camera. I could detect her head or tail at times. And when he’d join her, I could get an occasional shot of him at the nest. He just never hangs around for long though. - The ‘nest’ for the Fruit dove if it can be called that is only a small collection of ironwood needles. She stayed close to the 'nest' today but did do some moving around. - - Now the really great news is that I can watch both nests from each of a couple of different spots. So I don’t always have to fear missing a visit at one when watching the other. Some of the best shots are from other spots but when nothing is happening I can position myself at the ready for either nest. This is an an exciting opportunity as being shy this is about the only time one can observe then. Both birds are striking with the Fruit dove being out most colorful bird. - This truly was a Bonanza Nesting Bird Day. Two rather shy species to watch at once!