Hummers!

It wasn’t my plan to film hummingbirds this afternoon. On the agenda was transplanting several bushes and a Mulberry tree that I acquired as dry-root cuttings back in early Spring. When they arrived we weren’t ready to put them into the ground (it was a bit early – too cold and wet.) So, I stuck the sticks – which is all they were at the time – into felt pots. The trio of thorn-less blackberry bushes all took off fairly quickly. The grape vine was a bit slow in presenting its ultimate status, but it proved it was in fact alive. Compared to how they arrived, they all have done well since presenting their first leaves. In fact, I plucked a few perfectly ripe berries off of all three of the blackberry plants a couple of weeks ago and they were quite juicy and delicious.

For weeks on end, I assumed that the Mulberry tree (stick) was dead. It showed no signs of springing to life until the weather remained consistently over 75 degrees. With warm weather, it presented a leaf, then two, and now it looks like a little tree. I acquired all of these plants to attract wild (fruit eating) birds closer to the house. I know exactly where I want to plant them. However, now we have waited too long to get them into their final locations, as it will be tough to water them routinely and it’s been well into the 90s (and will probably remain there for another month.) Still, these sticks-now-plants have outgrown their little pots and I had to get them into bigger quarters or risk losing them after all this care on my back patio.

While I toiled with the soil, the hummingbirds were buzzing all around me. I was working on the patio where I’ve hung the new nectar carousel. Eventually, I just had to fetch the camera and take a few shots of these little gems.

In the past, when I have posted images of the hummingbirds perching (rather than hovering to feed), I’ve often heard “I didn’t know hummingbirds can stay still!” Yes, they can and do rest for a spell between travels to the nectar feeders or buzzing away to where they (hopefully) have built their tiny nests and are raising their wee little ones. I’ve actually noticed a lot of hummingbird activity in the ornamental (fruitless) pear tree that is about 30 feet from the office patio. I suspect they may have a nest in that tree.

Only the male Ruby-throated Hummingbird sports the brilliant, red feathers under his chin. Depending upon the lighting and how he holds his neck, that amazing color is often hidden. All of the following photos are of male birds. I routinely see two males at the same time, but I suspect there may be a third male and I just don’t see them all together at once. They are, after all, pretty dang fast!

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