Even though Lowveld winters are relatively mild, spring’s explosion of new life still surprises one. Every dormant thing suddenly greets the world with enthusiasm and the bustle for survival begins afresh. The Red-headed Weaver illustrates this perfectly, playing the role of a master builder.
Watching the male in action is fascinating. He makes a great fuss of his partner as he shows her various sites before they both agree on one for their new home. Then he lays the nest foundations by attaching strands of fresh, pliable material he has stripped from specific trees to the end of a branch. Mrs Weaver closely inspects his work as he progresses. When she disapproves, he starts over without complaining. While he is building, this normally silent bird softly chatters to his beloved – a perfect picture of newlywed bliss.
He carefully weaves the nest into a hollow ball. Often, he adds décor by threading a few leaves into the roof, which also aids waterproofing. He then weaves a long tunnel around the entrance and suspends it vertically below the nest for privacy and protection. Once the outer structure is complete, his sweetheart inspects it meticulously before she does the interior decorating. She adds softer material to the bowl where she will lay two or three bright greenish-blue eggs. While this process is taking place, Mr Weaver usually builds a second home close by to be used as sleeping quarters and from where he can look after his family.
Besides being master builders, weaver birds are undoubtedly the world’s most eco-friendly builders. They inspire us to look beyond just the location of a home to its impact on the environment. As one of Likweti Bushveld Farm Estate’s permanent residents, it symbolises the philosophy of green development.
This eco-sensitive estate on the edge of White River offers not only picturesque nature and prime location, but an opportunity to create a sustainable lifestyle. Here, you too can weave the dream you have for your family into a nurturing nest.
Fast Facts about Likweti
24/7 gated entrance & electrified “ClearVu” anti-climb security fence
To incorporate working macadamia farm
Building package available or build your own dream house
20km from Nelspruit/10 km from White River on tar roads
10 minutes from KMI Airport
• Building will only impact 6% of the 710 Ha estate
• 181 bird species identified to date
• 109 indigenous tree species identified