Weaver birds -The creative architects and Skilled Engineers
Weaver birds build nests which are so complex and intricate in design that humans find it difficult to emulate. Each species of bird has its own way of constructing nests. Each technique requires a design planned in advance, to adapt to the environment. The complexity of design demonstrates the talent and skills of birds. Weaverbirds make up a group of birds which are well-known for their roofed nests with elaborate interweaving of grass or leaf strips. Weaver birds resemble finches, particularly with their short, strong, conical bills. They feed on seeds, and other grain fields. They are social birds, usually nesting and feeding in colonies.
Architect, construction engineer, and site foreman all rolled into one....... the weaver bird.
The weaver birds are named after their nesting behaviour ant it is amazing that a bird, using only its beak, can weave something so intricate and so consistent that one could never reproduce it with our hands.
Need for intricate nests:
Weaver Birds use nests to protect eggs and nestlings from predators and adverse weather. To minimize predation, birds may use or build nests that are inaccessible, hidden, or camouflaged. Nests may also help keep eggs and nestlings warm.
Weaver birds prefer long grasses to build their nests preferably green, just before it ripens as it weaves better and when dried out is quite strong. They also know instinctively which materials to use, favouring fresh green blades of grass or strips of palm leaf. Weaver birds use a variety of plant materials to build their nests, including strips of grass, leaves, twigs and roots. A weaver bird has a strong, conical beak, which it uses to cut blades of grass that it will use in nest-building. The weaver bird can tie real knots in nest material with its beak and its feet. By tying knots, the bird makes the nest more secure. The nest of a weaver bird often has a narrow tube-like entrance that opens upside down. It is hard for a predator to get inside the nest. The weaver bird will often build its nest on a tree branch that hangs over the edges of a river. This also helps to protect the nest from predators.
While all the weavers of the genus Ploceus are generally similar, there are subtle differences between the species - in appearance, in nest design and in social behaviour.