Saturday, August 10, 2013

Little But Mighty.... Hummingbirds

The hummingbirds have been very busy around here lately! With all the hot weather, they have been busy as beavers humming around, keeping me busy as an ant supplying sugar water for them. I've had to change their sugar water almost daily!  I think I have between 5-6 hummingbirds that have nests close by. 

These amazing birds have gotten quite used to me being around their feeders, and now, instead of them being scared of me... it is me being a little scared of them! They have gotten quite comfortable having me around them, that they zip and fly around me so that I can almost feel their wings touch me at times! 

Since they are so comfortable around me now, they even allow me to snap pictures of them, and it doesn't bother them a bit.  They just keep drinking happily away.

Sometimes they stop what they are doing, and watch me, as I watch them.  But things are never quiet for more than a second  or two... as I've learned!

There is always another hummingbird hovering nearby waiting for its chance for a drink, and he'll have to fight off the current hummingbird to get a drink of his own.

But for now, this cute little fellow is content to take a drink, sit and let it digest, and then dive in for another big gulp!

Once in a while I've noticed two hummingbirds will drink together.  I haven't quite figured out the logistics of it all. But, I've never seen more than two at a time at a feeder.  If a third one shows up, all three go to fighting. 

Hummingbirds are very VERY territorial.  In fact, fighting and drinking go hand in hand for them.  And their little "squacks" let you know exactly where they are, and they really go to "squacking" when they are fighting for their chance at the feeder.

This little guy really drew my attention a few days ago.  I have a hanger for a bird house right below the hummingbird feeder. He seemed to think that this all was his.  He would fly up for a drink at the feeder, and then back down to his perch and just wait.

He would flit from flower to flower around the feeder, and then back for a drink... 

and then he would fly around to his favorite flowers in the area.... 
if you look closely, you can see Mr. Hummer perched on the table immediately center to the black pot...

 ... and now he is back to guarding his feeder and taking a long deep drink.

Back at the other feeder, another hummer is manning the fort.

He sits still long enough for me to get a great shot of him as he fills up his tank..

Our cat, Mr. Simba is not far from the action.  His head is on a pivot trying to keep up with all the activity of the hummingbirds. Luckily for them, they are far out of reach of Mr. Simba's claws, and all Simba can do is watch the action intently.

 Another shot of a hummer coming in for a drink...

 ... circling the feeder to make sure the coast is clear, and there is no fight to fight...

 ... and then its time....

... to refill the tank.

Now, I wasn't able to get a picture of the fight that goes on between the wasps and the hummers... but they do fight too!  I did not realize this before.  But, the wasps spend quite a bit of time around the feeders trying to figure out a way to get some of the sugar.  And I have seen those wasps chase the hummer away!  The wasps do not like any interference from the hummers, and certainly the hummers are more than willing to put up a fight, but I have seen the wasps literally chase the hummers away.

I put together a video below for you to get in on some of the action going on around here, and maybe you'll understand why I am more afraid now of the hummers than they are of me!  I think a pair of sunglasses are in order when out in the yard with these guys!  One wrong move on my part could really hurt if their beak flying at a high rate of speed were to connect with any part of my body! Ouch!

1 comment:

  1. I loved the photos, especially #7. It is my favorite! RH


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