In the three weeks since I photographed an Orchard Oriole working on her nest I’ve passed by the tree several times and seen no activity. On Sunday a male was sitting on branches about 30 feet from the nest.
After carefully watching the area he zipped into the nest with the grasshopper. You can just see one wing and a tail hanging out the entrance.
The nest was swinging back and forth in a light breeze and the male made a quick exit.
My question, was the male feeding his mate while she sat on eggs or chicks, was soon answered when the female appeared with another grasshopper.
The female was coming in at a different angle and had to pause to get into the nest.
After delivering the snack she came out with a fecal sac and disappeared into the woods.
It took me about five of her trips to catch this female Orchard Oriole pausing outside her nest. I had first seen her dart up to the branch and then poof, she was gone. I watched this clump of Spanish Moss for awhile and saw it moving like someone was in it and finally saw a head peak out. The opening of the nest faces the limb with leaves.
Fortunately for me she was a creature of habit and flew the same pattern from the nest to a swampy area to gather grass and back, singing both ways alerting me to be ready.
On one of her trips she stopped for a look around before continuting on her way.