Thursday, September 17, 2015

Birds and Blossoms

I am done filming hummingbirds and have taken everything, except the feeder itself, down. There are two schools of thought on hummingbird feeders. One school says remove the feeder to encourage the birds to leave. The other says the birds will leave on their own, but leave the feeder in place for other migrating birds to find so that they may replenish their energy. I subscribe to the second school.

We continue to see hummingbirds, but I think they are migrants. I think this female, who claimed the honeypot as her own, left last week. While I don't particularly like having both the feeder and the flower in the same photo, putting them in close proximity to one another seemed to work better than to only have the flower in the general area.

On the whole, though, I was disappointed in how seldom I was able to capture pictures of hummingbirds at the Allamanda. In the entire time I was taking photos, I think there were only a handful of times they came to the flowers. They were not nearly as interested in these trumpet blossoms as I had hoped.

Hummingbirds can sample blooms crazy fast; it is one lick and move on to the next blossom. This still-closed blossom was the exception. Before it even opened, the hummingbird wanted to sample it and she hovered there for quite some time until she was able to thread her bill into the interior. That allowed me to take several pictures — which is fine as long as you don't make too much of the fact that it is just a little stumpy closed bloom.

This image was taken two seconds after the last image. She looks like she may have been considering trying it again, but she didn't. In retrospect, I wish I had purchased the plant earlier in the season. But, that would have meant I would also have been out there a longer time than I was.

Here is the last photo I took of a hummingbird this year which just happened to be looking over the Allamanda. It was taken one month to the day from when I began shooting hummingbirds this year. I have several months to regroup and think about how to improve on photographing these little jewels. They return in April.

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