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The hummingbird

I eased behind the huge mass of nesting material and took a firm

hold of several strands, I then pulled back, quickly, to pull them

free. The jarring concussion, which followed, took me by suprise.

I tried to get my bearings as the ground rushed up to meet me and

recovered about two feet from the ground. After that near miss I

climbed back to the altitude I had been at and started searching

for my tormentor. I realized that I had grabbed hold of a human's

hair and that he had not been happy about it. He was rubbing his

head and throwing immense volumes of noise at me. Hummingbirds make

mistakes just like everyone else and more than most when trying to

build and protect a nest.

I decided that I should look elsewhere and settled on a lovely

little spider web. I dove toward it, feeling the thrum of my wings

and hearing the whoosh of the wind flowing past. The web glowed

gold in the morning sunlight and dew drops hanging from it shone

like liquid fire. A gnat flew too close and I captured it with a

snap of my long tongue. Snaring a long piece of the silk, I

immediately ascended, looking for my tree. My mate was awaiting my

return, and was soon rewarded as I pulled up to the carefully

camouflaged nest. I passed the silken strand over to her and left

to find some food.

The humans are very good to us and hang tremendous reservoirs of

nectar from various limbs and rafters. The containers come in all

shapes and colors but they all have red bases. I headed for one of

these and saw one of my rival males. He instantly attacked,

chirping his anger at my intrusion. I counterattacked and we began

a dogfight. Up and down, we came, zooming into space and plummeting

to the ground. Although he was a willing and able opponent, I

eventually wore him down, and he then left the scene.

I held a precise hover as my tongue formed a tube, then I began

slurping the sweet nectar from the feeder. Although I only weigh

about one half of an once, I consume twice that much food every

day. I captured a dozen mosquitoes on my way back to the nest and

then sat on the nest to keep the eggs warm while my mate went in

search of food.

Sitting in the nest is a luscious feeling. The eggs are warm and

the inside of the nest is silky and soft. My counterpart

constructed the nest from our downy feathers and spider's silk. My

mate designed and constructed the nest, and the lichens and bark

conceal it from predators. The first nest, which we had, was not as

well built and a Blue Jay came and ate the eggs. I arrived just as

the Blue Jay attacked the nest. He rammed it twice and knocked the

eggs out. The eggs fell to the ground and the jay went after them.

I charged, feeling the intense rush that my fury gave me.I felt no

fear as I beheld the onrushing behemoth. Such was my courage that

I hardly noticed the crushing slap of collision as I assaulted him

repeatedly. Finally, I had to accept defeat though and recognize

that my defence was futile.

This time all was not to be in vain though, as I felt the slight

tap of the chicks trying to free themselves. They escaped after a

few minutes and, I witnessed the miracle that we had brought about.

Two baby hummingbirds lay there, chirping for food.

Each was no larger than a bumblebee, but they were just as loud as

I am when defending my life. My mate took over and began feeding

them. Soon, they were asleep, blissfully unaware of the dangers all

around. Life is, truly, a wonder to behold.

Source: Essay UK -

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