Thursday, July 15, 2010

Backyard Ruby-Throated Hummingbirds

My hummingbird feeder seems to get drained much more quickly lately, so I sat around this evening to see if I could get some decent photos of these beautiful birds.  I think there are at least 4 different hummingbirds that visit my feeder, but there may be more. I know that female Ruby throated Hummingbirds do not have the ruby throats, and some females that I photograph have full tail feathers and one missing a chunk out of its tail feathers. I noticed one male RTH is very round and the ratio of its head size to body size is low... it may be a fledgling.

Sadly, I noticed a dead hummingbird in the tree in front of my hummingbird feeder. It was hanging upside down, still clutching to a tiny leaf stem. I left it there for a day or two to make sure it was not in a state of torpor (a nightly hibernation state). Sure enough, it was there for several days. I placed the leaf with the dead hummingbird in the back of a flower garden an noticed it was gone the next day. Back to the earth it goes...
It was a very big shock for me to find a hummingbird in this dead state but I have read that it is quite common.

Good birding,

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