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December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2011 2:17 pm
by Ironwood
I kept my hummingbird feeder going even after all the Ruby Throated hummingbirds were long gone. Much to my surprise on November 26 there was a hummingbird at the feeder. Later that day there was a second hummer fighting over the feeder. In a couple of days the second bird was gone. The first hummingbird has been here for 21 days.

I was told the hummingbird was a Rufous female. The Rufous hummingbirds do winter in Mexico and along the Gulf Coast. I'm about 100 miles from the Gulf.

Here are a few photos I managed to get through the kitchen window.
Rufous Female 12-1 at 4 PM.JPG

Rufous Female 12-12 at  10 AM.JPG


Looks like she has injured her right wing in this shot.
rufous female 12-13 at 11 AM.JPG


Looking better on the 15th.
Image
Image

And this one is from yesterday.
Image

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2011 6:26 pm
by jbullard1
Gene
I'd say keep Rufus a feeder filled
He may not know how to measure miles
And as usual GREAT PICS my friend
:2TU: :2TU: :2TU:

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Sat Dec 17, 2011 11:11 pm
by RSB
We had one visit last week, put out a fresh feeder. The honey bees toke over had to take the feeder down. :livid:

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2011 7:57 am
by Ironwood
Thank you Jerry. Yep I'll keep the feeder going through the winter. I wonder at what temperature 4-1 sugar water freezes?

RSB, I had that problem one year. Honey bees took over the feeders. I found the nest in an old hollow tree in my yard. I called a local bee keeper. He trapped the bees and took them away. You might try what I did when the Yellow Jackets took over the feeders. I taped, duct tape of course, over the holes in the feeder. Then drilled some very small holes in the feeder. The hummers could get to the sugar water but the yellow jackets couldn't.

Image

December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Sun Dec 18, 2011 12:04 pm
by RSB
Ironwood wrote:Thank you Jerry. Yep I'll keep the feeder going through the winter. I wonder at what temperature 4-1 sugar water freezes?

RSB, I had that problem one year. Honey bees took over the feeders. I found the nest in an old hollow tree in my yard. I called a local bee keeper. He trapped the bees and took them away.

Image


I know where the honey bees are nesting:(
My neighbor has them in his backyard for the honey and they always looking for water.


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Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2011 3:42 am
by terry08
Great pics as always. He needs to head for Mexico. Lol

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Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Mon Dec 19, 2011 10:54 am
by Ironwood
Thanks Terry, glad you enjoyed the photos.

Seems the Rufous hummingbirds can tolerate temps down to around 0°F. One of our cold spells took the temperature down to 24°. I thought for sure she would be long gone. When I checked the feeder, there she was having breakfast. :) If she stays here all winter I'm going to have to figure out how to keep the feeder going. Looks like I've got some more reading to do.

BTW, she was still here this morning.

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:12 am
by Ironwood
An update on the Rufous hummingbird. The temperature was down to 25° overnight. The sugar water wasn't frozen and the hummingbird was having breakfast about 7:15 this morning.

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:43 am
by jv
I thought that they all would be gone by now.

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Tue Jan 03, 2012 8:46 am
by Ironwood
JV.. I had left my feeder going long after the migration was over. I've found the Rufous hummingbird winters in Mexico and along the Gulf Coast. I'm only about 100 miles form the coast.

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 8:16 am
by Ironwood
After visiting for 55 days the little Rufous hummingbird has not been at the feeder for a week and three days. Hopefully she has gone on down to the coast. Makes me sort of sad. At least I hadn't given her a name. I still have the feeder up and glance at it each time I go into the kitchen. Maybe she'll come back this fall and visit for awhile.

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 12:13 pm
by schoolmarm
IWood, Maybe a little vodka would have kept the sugarwater from freezing and kept that gal there all winter. Loved the pics. I've got one of a ruby-throat lit on my bald head..

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 1:41 pm
by Ironwood
Schoolmarm, the sugar water never froze. Even when it got down to 24° a couple of nights. Sugar water doesn't freeze until it gets down to around 26° for an extended time. The first time it was going to get down to 24° I made up an extra feeder and kept it in the house just in case the feeder outside froze. Some Rufous breed as far north as Alaska so they can tolerate very cold temperatures. I read of one instance where a female was sitting on her nest while covered with snow.

I'm sure that's probably more information than you wanted.. :lol: :lol: :lol:

Re: December Hummingbird

PostPosted: Mon Jan 30, 2012 7:30 pm
by schoolmarm
not at all. Loved it. I'm not hightech enough to put pics out or I'd try to find the one with the hummer sitting on my head..