Fierce Hummingbird – 01Aug2014

Late in the evening, when hummers are wanting to top off before retiring, this guy was playing guard on all seven feeders in back. 

2014 Hummingbirds,

You can see the result of one encounter with what it considered trespassers on more sugared water than it could drink in a month. 

2014 Hummingbirds,

Yes, that is a feather at the end of its beak, and not one of its own.

. . . and look at that fierce expression!

. . . although, he was not super vigilant . . . 

2014 Hummingbirds,

However, after what seemed like brief catnaps, his attention would return to the feeders.

2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds,

. . . well, mostly . . . 

2014 Hummingbirds,

For them who are actually reading this, I’m at the sliding door to my deck, and its sitting on the flower basket on the table about six feet away. 

2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds,

Yes, he kept flaring his throat feathers, and I wondered if he was preparing to mount an offensive campaign directed at me.

But no, he just headed to the feeder on the window, and here’s where it gets interesting

2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds,

As I snapped away, I slowly crept closer.

2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds,

I was pretty dang close for these next two shots, and he never moved. I ended up backing off to let him drink in peace.

2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds,

He certainly was a pretty fellow, and you can now understand why I tagged this post with “macro”. I got closer to this guy than most flowers I shoot. In all fairness, he’s smaller than most flowers I shoot.

Anyway, there I was on the deck, camera in hand . . . I meandered to the hanging feeder.

2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds,

I do like it when they let me get close.

I don’t know if this is the same female (they all look alike after a while – birds, not actual females), but this one at a different window feeder also let me get close, but not as close as the earlier male.

2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds, 2014 Hummingbirds,

We’ve already noticed a drop-off in the numbers of hummers at our feeders. I only have to fill them every other day, and some don’t get used nearly as much. In another week I will start pulling some of the feeders, making sure to leave enough to minimize the early morning and late evening territorial wars.

I will miss them when they are gone, and will look forward to their return next May.

As usual, you can click on the photos for a larger version, but many of these are worth examining at full resolution, and you can do that at the SmugMug gallery HERE.

That’s it. This post has ended . . . except for the stuff below.

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. . .  my FP ward  . . . chieken shit.

About disperser

Odd guy with odd views living an odd life during odd times.
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33 Responses to Fierce Hummingbird – 01Aug2014

  1. renxkyoko says:

    There are more hummingbirds feeding in winter……that’s what I observe.

    Like

    • disperser says:

      You must live in a temperate region. If it still gets cold, and if the flowers are scarce, I can imagine they would be hitting feeders pretty regularly. Although, their diet includes bugs, and if it gets cold there may not be too many bugs around.

      Hmm . . . I’ll have to look into it. I read some parts of the Northwest have year-round hummers, and those winters are not always mild.

      Like

  2. Beautiful shots Emilio. The close-ups are great!

    Like

  3. sandra getgood says:

    Always love your hummingbird photographs, but this little fellow was amazing! I wonder if he’ll be back in May, taking charge of your yard!

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Thanks.

      Probably; it’s hard to tell their age, but since they live multiple years, I imagine some return to the same areas during the migration.

      Although, he’ll have a harder time bossing other birds in the spring. Many more aggressive birds early on.

      Like

  4. oneowner says:

    When you can’t fill the frame with a tiny bird, yeah, I’d call that close. Great detail and color. They look almost iridescent in some light.

    Like

    • disperser says:

      All of the photos are cropped, but the later ones, as I got close, are only minimally cropped to position the bird in the frame. The “original size” in Smugmug is larger than my screen, and I have a 30 inch screen.

      As for the color, yes. Very iridescent, especially in sunlight. I try to capture it in the photos, but it’s difficult because the colors get blown out.

      Like

  5. ĽAdelaide says:

    Wow, amazing shots. Aren’t they weird little creatures? I read your very long post over on TT’s site and am glad I did. And you’ve got the cleanest hummer feeders I’ve ever seen. Hmmmm… I stopped feeding mine but I’ve got lots of flowers, etc. They would never leave me since it has now stopped raining in California. Maybe I could actually have too many? Well, I’ll worry about that some other time. Lovely to meet you, I like your warnings.

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Thank you.

      The feeders are clean because they get refilled (and washed) at least once a day. And we too have lots of flowers, although our flowers are only around for three months or so.

      Sorry for the long timethief post . . . hope I didn’t use up all your words quota for the day.

      Like

  6. I think it must be lovely to get up close. I think they knew the difference between you and a predator. Great photos. Amelia

    Like

    • disperser says:

      . . . or, it can’t see my face because of the lens and camera in front of it.

      Thanks. I was worried about these because of the low light, but they turned out well enough..

      Like

  7. Kerry S. says:

    The tiny puffed-up male is funny and fabulous. The white behind his eyes definitely adds to his fierceness. Details with impact. Great photos.

    Like

  8. bluebee says:

    How exquisite. I’m intrigued by the changing colour at his throat. Is this some kind of defensive mechanism?

    Like

  9. PiedType says:

    I’ve always been fascinated by hummers. The first time I encountered one as a child, I thought it was a big bumble bee.

    You got so close on those closest shots, I thought you were going to poke him in the eye with your lens.

    Like

  10. I love hummingbirds. Your photos are excellent. Do their throats change colors? Or was that the lighting? Just gorgeous. We may have hummers in Florida but I haven’t seen any. We saw the most when we were in Costa Rica nearly 15 years ago. ;-)

    Like

  11. I love watching hummingbirds! Wow, what amazing photos! They are so beautiful they brought tears to my eyes.
    Hummingbirds inspire me to keep my wings flappin’.
    HUGS!!!

    Like

  12. kathydoremus says:

    Truly enjoyed scrolling through these photos. I have been trying my hand at getting pictures of these fast little buggers the last several days, so I applaud your results!

    Like

    • disperser says:

      Thanks . . . In past years I’ve had them land on my finger to feed (see videos above), but this year I passed up the opportunity. Still got very close to a lot of them, and snapped a lot of photos (again, links in the comments above).

      Good luck with getting your own shots.

      Like

  13. AnnMarie says:

    I’m glad to see all the comments to this post since it’s definitely very impressive. Totally enjoyed the super close-ups in SmugMug!

    Like

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