Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Joy of Hummingbirds

The autumn season in the Midwest brings cooler, more comfortable temperatures, a stunning array of colorful leaves and crisp, sweet apples ripe for picking. When the month of October arrives, I know the departure of our little Ruby-throated Hummingbird friends is not far away. It's no secret I love hummingbirds. Last fall I wrote a blog about my experiences with these tiny fascinating creatures titled Hummingbird Delight.

This past summer, Bruce and I took great pleasure in watching what seemed like hundreds of Ruby-throated Hummingbirds visit the fifteen feeders on our country property. This post features many of the hummingbirds seen over the last few months. It is time to bid adieu to these feisty, diminutive birds who so skillfully perform breathtaking aerial displays. They will surely be missed.

A common sight on our property over the spring and summer months ~ Ruby-throated Hummingbird

 
I did not know hummingbirds were capable of opening their beaks so wide until I witnessed this male exhibit the behavior several times

 
My, what a long tongue this hummingbird has!

 
Ready for departure ~ Take note of the small red feathers developing on the neck (gorget) of this young dashing male

 
A little itchy ~ I marvel at the minuscule feet

 
 A hummingbird wipes its long beak across the branch as if it is a violinist drawing the bow along violin strings

 
All fluffed up!

 
A little action at the feeder

 
While rehanging a feeder, I heard a chirping commotion behind my back ~ I turned around to find these two hummingbirds in a heated dispute

 
Using their beaks like swords ~ Dueling for ownership of the feeder

 
Pleasantly plump for the long migration south

 
Until next year ...



59 comments:

Bob Bushell said...

Beautiful birds and superb photos.

Dan Huber said...

wonderful post and photos!

dan

Cynthia White said...

Stunning images of these beautiful hummingbirds:)Super job!

Gillian Olson said...

Beautiful shots, I live hummingbirds too. You've captured them so well.

Ruth said...

Wonderful photos.You do love hummingbirds deeply.I can tell the way you capture they're amazing qualities on film.I also did not realize they could open their mouths that wide.

MoiCLouLou said...

Every picture has it's own story and I love every one of them. They are beautiful!

Thank you for sharing Julie!

PoetessWug said...

Bye, Bye little hummingbirds! :-( I love them and will miss them at my feeder too here in Massachusetts...Beautiful photos of them, as usual. :-]

Herman versteeg said...

Hoi Julie
wat een mooie foto's van die vogels,
groetjes Herman,

TexWisGirl said...

avian pixies. i do marvel at them so... :)

Guy said...

Hi Julie

You have posted some lovely photos. You really captured the range of there behaviours beautifully. I really like the scratching shot.

All the best.
Guy

Kerri said...

Your images are always such a delight! These are fabulous captures of such a sweet little bird! Well done my friend!

Hilke Breder said...

Utterly stunning images, Julie. Amazing variety! Love the one with the female sticking out her tongue.

JRandSue said...

Julie,you always amaze me with your wonderful photography,these are superb captures,sharp colourful,crisp detail.
Magic.
john.

Anonymous said...

A friend shared your wonderful hummingbird post with me, and I'm so glad he did -- you have some wonderful shots of these tiny birds and I've enjoyed seeing them.

Clover

cindyzlogic said...

Outstanding photography, Julie!! Wow! hundreds?! You lucky thing! Our family of Ruby-throats left about 2 weeks ago. So, I know how you feel...we miss them. Again super sweet, clear, colorful captures here!!

W.T. Jones said...

Julie,

Great shots I have never managed to get one with an open beak. Our hummers have been gone for nearly a month now. We miss them

Beverly said...

Wonderful post and images, Julie!

Beyond My Garden said...

My goodness! I have never seen hummingbird photos like these. The one with the long tongue is amazing.
nellie

Larry Ostby said...

It is such a treat to visit your blog. Several of your photos brought a smile to my face. You have captured some fabulous images. I think my favorites are images
1 through 12 :D

Judy Royal Glenn said...

Great photos! One of my favorite birds to photograph:0 I like the hummingbird sticking out his tongue! I was amazed when I saw one doing that one day! I never knew until I focused my big lense on them and started taking pictures:)

Art said...

Excellent pictures, So lovely!

Have a great Friday!

John's Island said...

Hi Julie, Another wonderful post and your pictures are just great! Your photography inspires me and the images you post always inspire me to get busy with my camera. I share your fascination and love of hummingbirds. Like Monarch Butterflies, I simply don’t understand how a creature so small can manage to fly so accurately, and through all the dangers, to a distant wintering ground. Just another part of nature that is so marvelous, and, as a matter of fact, a perfect illustration for which you have named your blog: nature’s splendor. Re your shot of the little hummer with long tongue: I did not realize until recently that hummers actually “lap-up” nectar from flowers. I had always assumed that the long beak was used more like a straw. Thank you for sharing! Best to you and yours, John

Jim Braswell said...

As always, nice captures, Julie! These little jewels are always fun to be around ... makes it feel like winter when they leave!

Ellie said...

These are awesome shots of a beautiful bird. It's got some beak on it.
Welcome to my blog, thank you for visiting and leaving a lovely comment and also for following. I'm following you now also :))

Daricia said...

wow! those pictures are great! who isn't just delighted by hummingbirds? we only had a few to visit our garden this year for some reason...will have to look into that and try to fix it for next year.

Red Rose Alley said...

Oh my, I came over to visit, and you have my most beloved bird on here. The Hummingbird is so special to me for so many reasons. I recently did a post about them called 'A Truly Special Bird.' They are such amazing birds. I've seen them fly around me at times, but I've never been this close to them. Your post made my heart sing today, and your photos are truly special.
~Sheri at Red Rose Alley

Shelley said...

This is such a great collection of hummingbird photos! You captured such great detail! All beautiful!

Ruth's Photo Blog said...

Thanks for the comment left on my blog. Your pictures are amazing.Awesome photography.

dreamfalcon said...

wow - what a series. The fluffy ones are great and the one with the tongue, amazing! But the last one I like best: it always amazes me how bird look right from the front!

Daniel said...

This post is a humdinger! Love the series of photographs.

dAwN said...

Wow~how did I miss this post..Gorgeous shots!

Tim said...

Wonderful photos! I really like the one with the beak wide open. Hummingbirds are so fun to watch!

forgetmenot said...

Julie. Thanks again for the nice comments-I do so appreciate them. Your photos of the hummingbirds are amazing. You've seen "hundreds" of them--I'm so jealous!!!!! I finally saw one in my yard this summer, and from the commotion I raised, you would have thought I had seen a dinosaur or ghost instead of a bird!!! Thanks for sharing your lovely photos--the second best way to see a hummingbird. Have a great week. Mickie :)

Ben said...

Hoi Julie,
Helaas zien we de kolibrie niet bij ons in dit gedeelte van Europa. Ik wil je een compliment maken voor de geweldige manier hoe je deze snelle vogels hebt weten vast te leggen.
Mooi van kleur en scherpte met een fraaie beweging van de vleugels.

Greetz,

Ben

Jann said...

Julie, such a wonderful hummingbird post! Could you tell me please how you created your Blog design so that you can post x-large photos and use more of the full screen? I cannot figure it out for my own new (soon-to-be) Blog. Thank you! (e: jellen103@yahoo.com)

Manuel Luis said...

Se vires um beija flor entrar na tua janela, fui eu que mandei dar um beijo na flor mais bela.

Rebecca said...

Wonderful photo series... I can't decide which is my favorite!

Marco Alpha said...

Hello Julie,
Every time you show me very special and beautiful birds. Nice to see them. I like it very much!!

Greetings, Marco

Ellie said...

Hi Julie, wonderful pictures of pretty wee birds. You are so lucky to have these on your property.
Thank you for coming over to visit and commenting on my picture.

Marsha @Spots and Wrinkles said...

Stunning photos! And I have a life-long love affair with hummingbirds!

So thank you !
Marsha @ Spots and Wrinkles

Debbie said...

WOW....what a lovely set of photo's i almost missed!!

hummingbirds are just a delight to watch and photograph. i wasted many an hour/day/week watching mine and learning their feeding habits!!

as i scrolled through, each picture became my favorite. truth be told, they are all winners, beautifully done!!

Debbie Miller @HooootOwl said...

Great post Julie, so many awesome moments captured in the day/season of a hummingbird. Especially loved "all fluffed up"

Nature in the Burbs said...

Very unique poses! Love it.

Hilary said...

You've captured some wonderful photos of these little beauties. They're not easy to photograph well. We saw the last of ours early in September. Their return is always a treat. Thanks for sharing your wonderful images.

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Joke van de Klift said...

Hi Julie,
Thanks for your lovely reaction on my blog.
We are very proud on ouwer birdhouse. But i find your blog so beautiful with the lovely birds WONDERFUL!!!
Have a nice day.Lovely greeting,
Joke

Pat Ulrich said...

What a fantastic series of hummingbird images! They are so much fun to watch.

Patricia/Trisketta said...

Oh Julie: Once again, you've managed to transport me to an enchanting place with your stupendous images and vivid metaphors. What a treat!

Linda Rockwell said...

How on earth did I miss this post? Wonderful hummingbird photos Julie!!

reba said...

Those are some fantastic shots...I love nature also. God has given us some beautiful things to take in. You are welcome to drop by my place "from my little corner of the world". Blessings, thanks so much for sharing.

Jeanne said...

Fantastic photo,s from these beautiful birds

Grt Jeanne

Wanda..... said...

Very happy to have found your lovely nature blog.

forgetmenot said...

Julie, I've already been here once to see your amazing photos, but I wanted to wish you a lovely weekend. We are all anxiously awaiting your next post--hope it is coming soon!!! Mickie :)

Herman versteeg said...

Hoi Julie
wat een mooie vogel die kolibrie en wat heb je ze mooi in beeld gebracht
dat vogeltje zie je bij ons niet in de natuur alleen in de dierentuin.
erg mooie foto's.
groetjes Herman Holland

Unknown said...

Such detailed shots! Enjoyed this post before, but wasn't able to log in to comment. Your talent at creating photos rich in your subject matter--is truly a delight to view!

Kathiesbirds said...

If you love hummingbirds this much you really need to visit SE Arizona! I used to get at least 6 to 7 species in my yard there!

Blu-I'd-Blonde said...

I'm enjoying all of the nature pictures on your blog. We don't get hummingbirds on a regular basis here in Kansas. Our neighbor's have shared their trumpet vines with us and I have seen a hummer there when they migrate through in early Spring and Fall (like in August). The only large groups of hummers I've seen are on vacations to Colorado mountains. Thanks for sharing.

carmen said...

Que belleza de fotos, que extraordinarios animalitos , colorido gracias por compartir tan bella naturaleza.
Saludos desde Panamá
Feliz año 2012

Bruce said...

Great post Julie, so many awesome moments captured in the day/season of a hummingbird. Especially loved "all fluffed up"