Sunday, February 27, 2011

More winter humming

Our winter hummingbirds are Anna's - Calypte anna -
and they are here year round. We do have some native and hybrid plants that bloom in late winter. Hummingbirds also manage to find insects, which is their main food source. If you keep feeders out year round, you can help them survive when we have really cold snaps.

Like some other animals in winter, notably raccoons, hummingbirds go into a torpor state when they sleep. Their temperature drops; their breathing and heart rate slows. Anna's hummingbird details-Cornell Ornithology Lab.

These birds tend to "tank up" on nectar at daybreak, then have a bit of a feeding frenzy right before sunset. "Jim" is one of two males and a female who are regularly at my feeders. I try not to stay outside very long to photograph them at sunset. Jim generally goes to the far side of the feeder farthest away from me. He will peek above the feeder to see if I'm still there.

My Hummer Gallery
Jim pretending to be a Costa's hummingbird

I just thought this shot was funny. He was determined that I was not going to photograph him flying. He would look right at me and fly straight up and out. I was standing in the front yard about 15 feet from the feeder.

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