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Fourth Day of Christmas

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love gave to me…

…four hummingbirds!

…three moorhens!
…two mourning doves!
…and a replacement for a Bradford pear tree!

Ruby-throated hummingbirds are the only kind we get in my neck of the woods (at least regularly—every now and then a weird vagrant will blow in) and they’re only here through early fall. They’ve long since left town at this point, completely defeating the bit where I planted two kinds of late-blooming salvia for them, which have never yet flowered while there are still hummingbirds in residence. I leave them up A) because there might be late migrants I miss who are really happy for the hit of nectar and B) because I don’t actually know if I can kill that one salvia and if I try and fail the plant will laugh at me and take my lunch money. (It’s only the size of a haystack. In the vegetable bed. That’s hardly inconvenient at all, really…)

Ahem. Right. Hummingbirds.

The ruby-throated hummingbird has a stable population. Single Female Hummingbird, who shows up in my yard (same individual or a succession? No idea) every year raised two babies this last year, much to my delight. The sight of a hummingbird with down still sticking to its tiny noggin was one of the greatest gardening moments of my life. I was so damn proud that my garden had enough going on to raise a hummingbird family. And there were two of them!

I do miss the dramatic hummingbirds from my time in Arizona, but really, any hummingbird is just plain cool.

Originally published at Squash's Garden. You can comment here or there.


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Combine this with the previous entry and we have Ruby On Rails.

Since I'm in Arizona at the moment... I haven't seen nearly enough hummingbirds, I think.

But! I was extra lucky to get this shot while I was out at the Phoenix Zoo with my mom.

Every time I see a hummingbird, I stop and watch because it still feels like it's super rare. (must be because they're fast lil things)

Here's my lucky hummingbird shot, at my parents' hummingbird feeder a few years ago.

oooo. Those are gorgeous shots! I am jealous.

Always a thrill to see hummingbirds. I also only get the ruby throated and whenever I'm in California I'm always thrilled to spot Anna's at the zoo. They are always there in large numbers!

We have hummingbirds in summer sometimes; not sure what kind though beyond Small An' Ludicrously Cute because I'm not a birder. I adore them though, and am always happy when I manage to spot one.

Oh gods, drama, yes..... Right now the local hummingbirds are doing the I'MASEXYMALEHUMMER, I'MASEXYMALEHUMMER, LOOKITMESWOOPING dance all over the place, making humongous looping dives to impress the ladies. I didn't realize that they mated this late, though I'd wondered why the hell they seem to go berserk at this time of year here in Tucson-- they dive-bomb my cats and perch on tiny twigs, pouring their miniscule hearts out in what sounds like a flood of computerized music. So very weird... I see a lot of Broad-billeds, Costas and this pretty little thing called an Anna's Hummingbird; the really agressively thuggish ones seem to mostly be Broad-billed Hummingbirds. My poor monster-kitteh Bob winces whenever he hears them; at 17 pounds, he's almost pathologically afraid of them.

I love hummingbirds. They're one of my favorite birds, along with crows... and bald eagles. And kingfishers. And great blue herons ... okay I have a lot of favorite birds.

just wondering what kind of rings will show up tomorrow...

I'm gonna second (or third) somebody's comment on one of the previous posts: you should make these into a set of Christmas cards.

We don't get a ton here in West Texas. But we did have a Black Chinned Hummingbird hang around while our Century Plant was blooming. It's a shame they don't bloom more than once.

Do you follow http://www.phobeallens.com ? It's a hummer cam, and she just laid an egg - number 2 will follow shortly, and then BABIES for the next couple weeks!

Growing up in Nanaimo, BC, we had the occasional Rufous or Anna's hummingbird at our feeder, but I'm currently going to the University of Victoria and just the few kilometers south makes for SO MANY more hummingbirds! Mostly Anna's, I think. I find their calls/songs peculiarly... directional, if that makes any sense. A half-second of hearing one of them making their crinkling-cellophane noise and I can usually spot him in his treetop - the sound is so definitely coming from a certain place. It must be something about the frequency of the call. There are so many living on campus! It always warms my heart a little to see them.

I'm in Southern California, in the LA area, so we prodominately get sqwaked at by Anna's and the occasional Allen's. Down by my thesis field sites in Orange County there's more Anna's, but also Costa's and even a Black-Chinned every once in a very great while. I got used to being J-dived at very quickly.

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