Monday, September 28, 2015

Our Yards Have Been Humming

During the latter part of August and most of September our yards have been busy with Ruby-throated Hummingbirds. These tiny birds fly through our area on their migration south, a migration that includes a 500-mile flight over the Gulf of Mexico.

Several of our migrants were adult males, distinguished by their beautiful ruby-colored gorgets (throats).

Some of the males would stay for a few days and would expend a huge amount of energy defending one of our hummingbird feeders from other migrants.

This particular male set up a guardpost on a grapevine twig, from which he would zoom over to drive away any other hummers trying to reach "his" feeder.

Females and sub-adult males would try to sneak in to feed while the defending male was busy chasing other intruders away. In the meantime they would perch under our deck roof. This bird seemed to prefer perching on a strand of Xmas lights.

This one's favorite perch was a mobile with glass fish.

Some of the hummingbirds would choose to feed from our flowering plants, which were also attracting lots of dragonflies.

At the time of writing, the bulk of hummingbird migration appears to be over. However, the milkweed plants are now attracting Monarch butterflies to our yards. Judging by the number of eggs already laid by these, we may have a good crop of Monarch caterpillars in October. 



Dave said...

Brilliant Post Jeff.

I wish I could view Hummers in the garden, I envy you.

Jeff said...

I'll certainly miss them when we move to Spain!