The little Anna’s hummingbird, Charlotte, who moved into the elm tree in the panda exhibit last month, is doing great! (See post Bai Yun’s New Neighbor.) Visitors are asking to see her, and she is becoming quite popular. Charlotte hatched her eggs two weeks ago and can now be seen flying around to collect food and returning to the nest to feed her young.
Nobody knows how many chicks are in her nest, though, because the nest is high up, and the walls of the nest are pretty high. I will tell you, however, that from time to time we see a little beak reaching up to Mommy Charlotte’s beak for a little nourishment. Typically, this hummingbird species lays up to two eggs, and the babies remain in the nest for three weeks. I really can’t wait to see those babies flying around in a few weeks.
Bai Yun never took notice of Charlotte and her family, and now she and Gao Gao have switched enclosures to smell each other’s scent marks. Like the giant panda, the female hummingbird only stays with the male long enough to mate, and the female is responsible for building the nest and rearing her young.
Michelle Penick is a panda narrator at the San Diego Zoo.