It hasn't got a mini-bar or a WiFi, but the bowerbird lives in a refined and elegant bachelor pad. With the coming of the mating season, this bird, living in New Guinea's mountains, collects wooden sticks to build a cosy love nest for dating. The residence can have two different architectural styles. In the "maypole" one, the sticks are mingled together so to create a tent-shaped structure; while dreamers prefer the "avenue" style bower where the material is arranged vertically into a sort of arcade. Once the flat is done, the rampant bowerbird works on the design and decorates the ambience with colored shell, stones, flowers and man-made objects. In some nests a carpet of moss is placed at the entrance, while iridescent feathers offer comfortable cuddling spots. Once engaged, the new couple leaves the bachelor pad for a bigger and more family-friendly nest.
3. The green finger of the red velvet mite
Image courtesy of Ton Rulkens