Like her male counterpart, the female Anna’s hummingbird (Calypte anna) is mostly grey and greenish. However, she does not have his iridescent red head and gorget feathers, although the throat is sometimes blotched with a few red feathers.
Anna’s hummingbirds do not form pairs. The female alone chooses the nest site, builds the nest, broods the eggs and cares for the young. The nest is usually located on a horizontal branch between 6 and 20 feet off the ground near a source of nectar. The cup nest is constructed out of plant down and spider webs, often decorated on the outside with moss or lichen. Once the female creates the nest base she sits in the nest and builds the cup rim up and around herself. The tiny nest is about 1″ tall and 1.5 ” wide.
Hummingbirds are New Word birds. The earliest European explorers, unfamiliar with these tiny creatures, thought they were perhaps a cross between insects and birds and called them “flybirds”.
The male Anna’s hummingbird was discussed in my previous post (“Male Anna’s Hummingbird” 11-02-2016).
This Anna’s hummingbird built her nest along the Anza Trail near Tucson AZ.