What is man without the beasts? If all the beasts were gone, man would die from a great loneliness of spirit. For whatever happens to the beasts, soon happens to man. All things are connected. - Chief Seattle

This is the place to continue your journey with me to help you realize how every aspect of nature is an integral part of your life.

 

Speed & Stamina

September 09, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Speed & StaminaSpeed & Stamina

 

Even though they are small, the hummingbird migration is long distance, spanning hundreds and even thousands of miles.  The migration takes place during daylight hours when they stay low looking for feeding opportunities.

In preparation for their long journey to their wintering grounds, they try and refuel with the objective to add 40% to their body weight.

While I cannot attest to how much weight they have gained this week, they certainly are spending a lot more time at the feeder and at the flowers fueling up for their journey which will take them many hundreds or even thousands of mile from here are a rate of up to about 25 miles a day.

 


Hokey Pokey

September 06, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Hokey PokeyHokey Pokey

 

Not really a hummingbird dance, but it was interesting to watch the preening process and be able to capture the finite details of this hummingbird's foot. Over time, their feet have evolved to be small so they are lighter weight - - more efficient for flying fast.

 

Even though they cannot walk or hop on their feet (for example like a robin), they will use their feet to preen or for itching.  They also are able to hop sideways when perched on a branch like this.

 


W Shape

September 02, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

W ShapeW Shape

 

The hummingbird's tongue is shaped like a "W".  It's flat , but splits at the very end. 

The hummingbird also has a long beak which enables them to get at the nectar at the very bottom of a flower.  It's their tongue, however, that enables them to pick up the nectar.  When eating, they extend their tongue, spread the tip, cover it with nectar and retract it into their mouth.

 

 


Preening

August 29, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

PreeningPreening

 

Hummingbirds are unique in many aspects.  They are the only birds that can fly in different directions as well as hover in mid-air.

If caught in the rain, they can shake their heads rapidly, over 100 times per second, to remove the droplets.  Oh by the way, they can do this while flying.

Unlike most birds, they do not migrate in flocks; they migrate individually.

They have huge appetites.

They fly at about 30mph.

All of these factors make photographing them a real challenge.

 


Collecting Nectar

August 26, 2022  •  Leave a Comment

Collecting NectarCollecting Nectar

 

The hummingbird's metabolism is very fast.  Not that elephants can fly, but the hummingbird's metabolism is 100 times faster than the elephant.

Reportedly they will scout over 1000 flowers a day for food.