Best Nest

5 best nests: Images reveal innovative bird homes

These birds build nests that dazzle through design.

Originally Published: 

Genus Orthotomus


Using its beak, the tailorbird pulls plant fibers and insect silk through tiny holes in leaves — like a needle and thread — stitching them into a nest.

Building time: About one month

Biggest perk: Leaves help the nest camouflage in greenery

Fun fact: Commonly live in urban gardens

Montezuma Oropendola

Psarocolius montezuma

This bird also weaves. Its specialty is creating hanging sack-like nests from branches.

Building time: 10 days

Biggest perk: Wasp-looking nest keeps predators away

Fun fact: Oropendolas are very picky about nesting tree choice

Charles J Sharp


Genus Archilochus


Hummingbirds build the tiniest nests of any bird.

Tap to see the cutest functional feature >>

Building time: Five to eight weeks

Biggest perk: Nest can balance on thin wires, clotheslines, or the top of a cactus

Fun fact: Nest is the size of a ping-pong ball


Seiurus aurocapilla

The ovenbird creates a domed nest out of leaves, grass, mud. It resembles an outdoor oven, hence the bird's name.

Building time: About two weeks

Biggest perk: Dome shape is extra protective

Fun fact: Females line the nest with animal hair

White-nest Swiftlet

Aerodramus fuciphagus

Nests made out of dry saliva can attach directly to walls and other surfaces.

Building time: 30 days

Biggest perk: Versatile design means nests can be built anywhere

Fun fact: The nests are a delicacy, eaten steamed and cooked in bird's nest soup

To learn how to attract birds to your garden, click here.

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