I’ve complained often over the years about the lack of hummingbirds I attract to my yard. Well, this is year is finally different. I’ve got males, females and first-year birds (both male and female presumably) and they visit frequently. I have a feeder in the backyard with the rest of the feeding station, and a suction cup feeder stuck to my office window. Both are busy all day, every day. It’s been a lot of fun watching them. Here are some shots of my visitors. (Females and first-year ruby-throated hummingbirds look very similar. I’m guessing this is an adult female because it is very territorial.)
Not sure if it’s the same male ruby-throated hummingbird I had last fall, but at any rate, it was good to see him return to the feeder a few days ago. He’s been their daily, several times a day. The female is still hanging around, too. Hopefully there’s a love connection there and they’ll build a nest somewhere on my property. I’ll keep my eyes open.
This female ruby-throated hummingbird arrived today (Sunday, April 30, 2017) at the feeder. I put the feeder out about two weeks ago in anticipation of the hummingbirds’ return. Is it the same female hummingbird that has visited my feeder over the last few seasons? I’m not sure, but I’m glad to welcome them back, either way. Hopefully she will find a suitable nesting site on my property. If she heads farther north, well, that’s fine, too.
The vast majority of the hummingbirds have gone south by now. But that doesn’t mean I can’t do another post on these spectacular tiny birds. I did a series of posts and bird columns on hummingbirds a few months ago and received a tremendous amount of feedback. So here, in no particular order or font, is a ton of information from Birds of New England readers. Thanks so much for your feedback and feel free to write any time. Siimply comment on this post or send me an email to email@example.com
We live in condos on a large open pond surrounded by trees so it’s a perfect environment for the little birds, lots of open space to chase each other around and lots of areas to perch. I can’t seem to get them to come to my feeder (I have one and my neighbor has 3) but they do occasionally visit my hanging petunias and fuschias which I specifically hung knowing hummers are attracted to the tubular flowers. They are extremely entertaining to watch and I was very disappointed to learn that they were actually being aggressive toward each other and not playing. Oh well, I guess it can’t be Disney all the time…
I have a feeder hanging about 2 feet from the glass jalousies that enclose my breezeway and see these little guys every day. I don’t have any flowers near them (my yard is very shaded) but there are some coleus plants below the feeder so perhaps they see those bright colors. I also have a hairy woodpecker who drinks from the hummingbird feeder and I find that I must refill it about every 4 days since he is so thirsty! He just hooks his feet over the edge where the base meets the clear upper part and drinks away. There are 3 plastic flowers around the base of the feeder that the birds drink from and they are a couple inches apart but if one hummingbird is drinking, the other one won’t go to one of the other flowers and in fact, if there are two of them around at the same time, they dive bomb each other. One of the hummingbirds that comes has the bright red spot on his throat and the other one looks like the one in your picture without the red throat. I can be just inside the windows that are tilted out and they come bopping around right up to the window. I love seeing them and know they won’t be around too much longer but then it will be time to start buying sunflower seed for all my other winged friends Continue reading
Well, I keep seeing them, so I’ll keep posting photos of them. Soon, the vast majority of hummingbirds will have left New England for their incredible migration to Central and South America. So as long as I keep seeing them …
My friend Stacy gave me some Canna rhizomes last winter. I stored them in the basement and planted them this spring. In the middle of summer, I had a few red flowers, but not as many as I thought I’d have. Now, at the end of summer/beginning of fall, I have tons of flowers. The hummingbirds are taking notice, as well, as proven by these photos.
Canna is a more southern plant so it should be dug up and stored over winter in New England. Kind of a hassle, but worth it …
Here’s the latest For the Birds column which runs in The Hour (Norwalk, Conn.), Keene (NH) Sentinel, and several weekly newspapers on Connecticut.
The emails about hummingbirds kept coming, so I will roll out one more column on these tiny birds.
I used to have the worst luck trying to find hummingbirds, but this year has been an exception. I have consistently seen them at my feeder and out in the field, so to speak.
Now is the time to look for them among the many patches of jewelweed, or touch-me-not, that grow at the edges of New England’s woods. Even in years when I don’t see a lot of hummingbirds, I always seem to find them in late summer and early fall buzzing around the small orange flowers of jewelweed.
But enough about where I am seeing them. Hummingbirds are obviously a regional favorite as I have received several emails regarding the species over the last few weeks. In addition to what I included a few weeks ago, here’s a sampling of what people are saying about the smallest of birds. Continue reading