There are many different Weavers in the world and as far as I can tell they share the skill of masterful nest building… unlike the shabby unstable creations of, say, Mourning Doves. By the way, I’ve tried to ID everyone appropriately but if you have any corrections please say so in the comments.

Above a Speke’s Weaver displays below the nest in an effort to attract a female.

It takes a great deal of effort to both build a nest and keep a watchful eye on competitors who might be stealing their nest material from you while you’re out.

A female takes her time inspecting a nest while the male waits just out of view.

Click on the image to see a Speke’s Weaver colony in action on an escarpment near Lake Manyara, Tanzania.

Other weavers include the Grey-capped Social Weaver which is the size of a little sparrow.

And the Vitteline Masked Weaver with a buzzing raspy call that is unmistakeable.

The Red-headed Weaver hunting silently in the treetops.

And the splendid Spectacled Weaver nesting in my mother’s backyard. There are many more Weavers to be seen in East Africa, all lovely and interesting. I highly recommend a trip. If you ever get the chance don’t hesitate for a second.

Written by Walter
Walter Kitundu is an artist and designer, instrument builder and bird photographer. As an artist he has created hand built record players powered by the wind and rain, fire and earthquakes, birds, light, and the force of ocean waves. Walter has performed and been in residence at art centers and science museums internationally. He has performed with the renowned Kronos Quartet, bassist Meshell Ndegeocello, the electronic music duo Matmos, and the legendary Marshall Allen - in venues from Carnegie Hall to a high school library in Egilstaadir, Iceland. In 2008 Walter became a MacArthur Fellow. Walter loves photographing birds and is an ongoing volunteer with the Golden Gate Raptor Observatory. He was hooked when a Red-tailed Hawk landed at his side, ate a caterpillar, then refused to leave. He is a Senior Design Developer for the Studio Gallery at the Exploratorium in San Francisco where he designs and builds environments for learning. You can see more of his work on his blog, Bird Light Wind.