Much Seen at Lake Bunyonyi: the Weaver Bird, Known For its Love Nest.

posted in: About Uganda | 0


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Lake Bunyonyi literally means ‘place of many little birds’. Among the many bird species that live at the lake, the much seen weaver bird stands out because of its special way of nest building. Their nests are even known to be one of the most sophisticated in birds.

Weaver birds range from about 10 to 25 centimeters in length with the male birds often being brightly yellow and black colored, while the females have a paler brownish-yellow color. Typical of this species is that a male does his utmost to build a nest that will be approved by a female.

The male starts the nest building by making a knot with a long blade of grass. Next he builds a circular structure, weaving blades using his beak and feet. Then he weaves grass around the initial ring to build a ball-shaped nest. The bird has a strong, conical beak, which he uses to cut blades of grass for those to be used in the nest-building. He can tie real knots in nest material with its beak and its feet, that way making it more secure. The bird takes about two days to complete the nest. The last step is to add soft grass to upholster the nest and make it comfortable for the offspring to come. The nest usually has a narrow tube-like entrance that opens upside down, so it is hard for a predator to get inside. A weaverbird nest is completely waterproof and will basically not be damaged by water or wind.

The male usually builds between 5 to 10 nests, and then waits for a female to visit them and choose one of them. He tries to attract a possible mate by enthusiastically flapping his wings. Sometimes, after the male has completed the basic structure of a nest and a female has approved it, the female will help him to complete the nest. However, if a nest is not occupied by a female after a few days, the male will destroy it and build another one, as females only pick up freshly build nests. One single male may built more than 50 nests in one breeding season.



Also interesting to read: Uganda’s National Symbol, The Crested Crane


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