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Re: Hummingbird behaviour
- To: <email@example.com>, "CAROLINA BIRDS" <firstname.lastname@example.org>, "BILL HILTON JR. \(Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History\)" <email@example.com>
- Subject: Re: Hummingbird behaviour
- From: "Randy Dunson" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Date: Sun, 13 Aug 2000 11:23:50 -0400
- References: <85256934.00774EDB.email@example.com> <firstname.lastname@example.org>
- Sender: email@example.com
Thanks Steven & Bill for your assistance. I believe I can now tell the
difference between the fledglings & the adults. It appears that only one
male is present now, though I can't be sure. Any hope of any of them
hanging around during the winter like those in Chapel Hill last winter?
----- Original Message -----
From: "BILL HILTON JR. (Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History)"
To: <firstname.lastname@example.org>; "CAROLINA BIRDS"
Sent: Monday, August 07, 2000 7:33 PM
Subject: Re: Hummingbird behaviour
> >Hi Randy,
> >The photos of the multiple birds at feeders are usually pics taken in the
> >western part of the U.S. Several of the western species are much
> >more tolerant
> >of neighboring individuals than our beloved ruby-throats. Some of
> >these western
> >feeding stations use reservoirs that hold gallons of water and
> >provide dozens of
> >perches! Our ruby-throats are a little higher on the scale of
> >You may, however, find that the local hummers will become more
> >tolerant later in
> >the year after the nesting is over. I will occasionally see all four
> >occupied on my feeders. Many of the birds being seen now are hatch year
> >that closely resemble adult females in plumage, which may help
> >explain why there
> >are more dominant "females" out there this time of year. There are
> >simply more
> >female plumaged birds out there than there are adult males.
> Steven Schultz is correct is stating that that many of the
> "multi-bird" photos are taken out West where there are more species
> and apparent greater tolerance. However, I think the tolerance may be
> based in part out of necessity because of the "indefensible food
> source" concept.
> In southeastern Arizona, many hummingbirds concentrate in the "sky
> islands"--the very scarce green valleys that have streams running
> through them (e.g., Ramsey Canyon or Madera Canyon). I've seen
> feeders in these locations surrounded by dozens--maybe hundreds--of
> hummingbirds, especially early in fall migration. It would be
> virtually impossible for any individual bird to dominate a feeder in
> these situations, so the smart thing to do would be give up, take
> your turn at the feeder, and chug down as much sugar water as you can
> before getting bumped off by the next thirsty hummer.
> There are places here in the East where the same sort of thing
> happens. One such place is the North Carolina mountains, where there
> are fewer people and therefore fewer hummingbird feeders. Thus, when
> a mountain-dwelling human puts out a feeder, it begins to attract
> birds from a wide area, and they sometimes come in such numbers that
> the feeder again becomes "indefensible." (Although I haven't been to
> see it, I understand Grandfather Mountain's visitor center has
> feeders that often have every perch taken by a bird.)
> Down here in the Piedmont, the hummingbird population is spread out a
> bit more, and it's almost as if every suburban lot with a feeder has
> its own small complement of hummers. An adult male Ruby-throat can
> defend about a quarter-acre of property, and if there are only a
> dozen or so birds in the neighborhood, he can probably hold his own
> during the breeding season. It gets a lot harder along about August,
> however, because the local hummingbird population is at least doubled
> by new fledglings, and the backyard feeder may become indefensible.
> Whatcha think?
> P.S. I'll be banding hummingbirds during public presentations the
> first three weekends in August at Allison Woods (Statesville),
> Stacy's Greenhouses (York), and RibbonWalk (Charlotte). Details are
> on the websites (addresses below).
> BILL HILTON JR., "The Piedmont Naturalist"
> Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History
> 1432 DeVinney Road
> York, South Carolina 29745
> e-mail: <email@example.com>
> Voice: (803) 684-5852
> eFax: (503) 218-0845
> Hilton Pond Center for Piedmont Natural History is a 501(c)(3)
> non-profit research and education organization, so all in-kind or
> monetary gifts to Operation RubyThroat and the Center are
> tax-deductible. Please visit our websites:
> Hilton Pond: <http://www.hiltonpond.org>
> Operation RubyThroat: <http://www.rubythroat.org>
> "Never trust a person too lazy to get up for sunrise or too busy to
> watch the sunset."