Hummer activity in Central FL

Joined: August 21st, 2012, 2:43 pm

September 20th, 2016, 7:55 pm #1

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.


Joe M.
Lakeland, FL
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: August 21st, 2012, 2:43 pm

September 23rd, 2016, 6:33 pm #2

The migratory activity here continues. It is rather obvious that all the hummers I'm seeing here day to day are passing through and not spending much time here as they continue South or fatten up in preparation for a trip across the Gulf.
Very few repetitive visits by the same bird to the same feeder every 15-25 min. All the visits to various feeders are always by different birds, adults and immature both male and female. Also interesting is that I have seen no squabbling at a feeder or any indication that a hummer is laying claim to a feeder and defending the feeder from others. It's very unusual not to see territorial behavior but I sure haven't seen any in the past week, that will change once we see indications that a hummer has decided to spend the winter here.
Nice to hear of all the hummers you folks further north are still seeing, enjoy them while you can since they are on the move south!
Cheers






Joe M.
Lakeland, FL
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: May 18th, 2013, 9:33 pm

September 24th, 2016, 2:26 am #3

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Joe

Good to hear you are having some visitors in the south. I seem to have at least 2 or 3 or at least I know I have more than one as I see chases thru the air. Its rare to see one bird on a feeder more than a few seconds before being forced to leave, time is getting short by the day and by the minute.
Steve W.
Martinsville IN.
Zone 6
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: September 10th, 2011, 4:19 pm

September 24th, 2016, 5:21 pm #4

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

One of my two resident females has flown the coop. The other remains, with full access to feeders and flowers. No more squabbling. Only one passer by noticed about a week ago. A male with only one red feather.
Correction: one feeder fight today.
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: July 3rd, 2014, 2:17 am

September 25th, 2016, 1:31 am #5

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Joe,

I'm further north than you and am only seeing the rare male and occasional females. My population seems lower than this time last year or maybe I just haven't been outside enough in the daylight to see them. Dang work keeps getting in the way

Tomorrow, I'm going to make a concentrated effort to try to get some semblance of a count of the little guys and gals. I have 6 feeders spread out over 1 1/2 acres in order to reduce the feeder domination, so it's often hard to get even close to an accurate count. And throw in the gardens, here and there.

Curious....do you have some stay over winter? I always leave a feeder out but don't see any and usually end up dumping the sugar water out every few days.

Rhonda
Never stop enjoying life,
Rhonda

Rhonda Furlong
Englewood, Florida
Zone 10a
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: March 5th, 2006, 2:03 am

September 25th, 2016, 1:46 pm #6

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Hey, guys, I'm to the East of both of you, but south of Rhonda and north of Joe. I share some of your situation, Rhonda, in that I can't see much of my garden. I don't have as much land as you, but the most active part of my garden I can't see from inside. I do, however, have two feeders that are right in front of windows and on different sides of the house, so I see what is going on there at least sometimes.

The good news is that I'm still getting visits from Baltimore Orioles. I think there are two males. I have not seen any females. They come at pretty much the same time as the hummers--early in the morning, at dusk and then sporadically during the day. I don't know how long they will stay in the area. Last year I saw them only in the spring, so I think I"m seeing the same birds now.

I've had two or three hummers visiting for the past six or seven months or so. I assume they aren't the same birds, but I really can't identify them, except to say that I haven't had a clear view of an adult male for around three months now. I have hummer-friendly flowers all around my garden now, so if they are around I'm confident that they will visit.

Very glad to see that those of you up north are seeing or have seen so many migrants, and sad that soon your hummingbird season will come to a close. I have dreams of renting a house in the southern Arizona mountains in the winter to see all the hummers that are still around there.

Wow! I just saw a very fat adult male visit the feeder outside my office window. Almost certainly just stopping by on the way somewhere, but I can still hope he stays around a while.
Central Florida 9B
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: July 3rd, 2014, 2:17 am

September 25th, 2016, 3:04 pm #7

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Tom,

My feeders arrive tomorrow, so please send one of those Orioles slightly north I'm also moving one my feeders in front of my sewing room window today

I too have dreamt of living in southern Arizona ever since I spent two weeks in Sierra Vista bird watching 35 years ago. I have never seen so many hummers, flycathers and other birds and the view of the Huachuca Mountains in the distance is amazing. If you don't get your winter home there (I hope you do), maybe you should spend at least a few weeks there birdwatching.

Rhonda

Never stop enjoying life,
Rhonda

Rhonda Furlong
Englewood, Florida
Zone 10a
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: August 21st, 2012, 2:43 pm

September 25th, 2016, 10:55 pm #8

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Rhonda,
We always have over wintering hummers here in my yard. Most areas of FL have a population of over wintering hummers. 3-5 are the usual number here in my yard, and the majority are usually males. My yard is similar to Tom's in size, less than 1/2 acre so it's easier to keep track of them. I strongly recommend that you keep at least 2 (small volume) feeders up during the winter months. Western hummingbirds (Rufous, Black-chinned, Calliope, Allen's and Buff-bellied) are reported in the Panhandle and east to Jacksonville virtually every winter! Although uncommon they are seen and well documented. The only bird, of those mentioned, I have not seen in my yard is the Buff-bellied but have seen it in Lutz about 30 mi. to the West and just north of Tampa.

Photo taken of a Male this afternoon.




Joe M.
Lakeland, FL
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: July 3rd, 2014, 2:17 am

September 26th, 2016, 12:45 am #9

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Joe,

What a gorgeous photo! I did see several females today, no males. And the females were all pretty small, didn't appear to be ready to migrate yet.

I didn't realize that hummers over-wintered in all parts of Florida, thought they'd only stay in the southern part of the state. I will definitely keep up at least two feeders this winter, maybe close to the house so I might catch a glimpse.

Thanks!
Rhonda
Never stop enjoying life,
Rhonda

Rhonda Furlong
Englewood, Florida
Zone 10a
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: March 5th, 2006, 2:03 am

September 26th, 2016, 12:41 pm #10

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Rhonda, I believe that the vast majority of over-wintering Ruby-throateds stay in areas south of Central Florida. I am right near a changing dividing line that separates Southern Florida, which sees most of their hummers in the late fall and winter months, and Northern Florida, which sees Ruby-throateds during the major migration months.

As Joe says, there are other species? of hummers that visit Florida in the late fall and winter months. I think the most common are the Rufous. I see them something like every other year. They can take colder weather.

Probably the next most common are the Black Chinned. I have seen one or two, but only one year. The others are less common, but they are still reported sporadically.

With this warm weather it is very possible that we will be seeing more Ruby-throateds for longer times this year.

I have learned that there is often significant differences in the number and types of hummers that are seen not only here, but in many places in the USA--and I'm sure this is true in other countries as well.
Central Florida 9B
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: July 3rd, 2014, 2:17 am

September 27th, 2016, 1:45 am #11

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Tom,

What you said about the ruby-throats makes sense. I had always heard that the Orlando area was about the most northern area for over-wintering rubies. I would love to have a Rufous, Black Chinned or two stay here.

I have also heard that our warming weather is sending more species east of the Mississippi and keeping Rubies here longer.

Joe and Tom,

I plan on keeping two feeders up over the winter and moving them in front of the windows so I have a better chance of seeing any that over-winter here. I don't have much blooming in the winter so what do you recommend plant-wise to supplement the feeders. Or, are the feeders alone enough?

Thanks!
Rhonda
Never stop enjoying life,
Rhonda

Rhonda Furlong
Englewood, Florida
Zone 10a
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: March 5th, 2006, 2:03 am

September 27th, 2016, 1:01 pm #12

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Rhonda, as I'm sure you know, the more hummer plants that you have the more likely you will have visits. Probably the best thing to do if you want to see them is to have some good hummer plants near the feeders that are right outside your windows.

If you have the time I would keep feeders there all winter. The new feeders that you have are very easy to clean and in the winter months you can go longer without having to change them out.
Central Florida 9B
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: August 21st, 2012, 2:43 pm

September 27th, 2016, 8:51 pm #13

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Happened to note an interesting sequence of photo's when an Immature Male came to the feeder.
The photo's were taken in sequence about .2 sec. apart. Note that he started with the drop of solution that was about to drop from the tube and after he had taken care of the drop he started feeding from the tube. All in the flash of the eye which would not have been noticed without the photo's.

Another point to make is the dark color of this birds "stippling" which to the "naked" eye might be seen as the full gorget of an Adult. My eyesight is not as it was 40 years ago and I initially thought it was an Adult hummer at a distance of 30'.

For Tom, I have always considered the East-West line from Tampa to Cape Canaveral as the dividing line between breeding activity of Ruby-throat's in FL rather than their over wintering habitat. Over wintering hummers are fairly common as far north as Charleston SC, southern GA and AL.
For Rhonda I will share the names of banders that will visit you yard, during the winter months, if you contact me off site, my e-mail address is available, just click on my log in name.





Joe M.
Lakeland, FL
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: July 3rd, 2014, 2:17 am

September 28th, 2016, 1:31 am #14

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Tom,

I'll try to get more annuals the hummers may enjoy for the winter and put them in hanging baskets on double shepherd's hooks with the feeders. I also remembered that my purple firespikes bloom in the winter as well as the starburst clerodendrum (not sure if the hummers use this).

Joe,

Those are awesome action shots!!! Just curious about the camera you're using (I assume Nikon or Canon slr), lens, shutter speed and burst rate. I have done lots of sports photography over 40 years and I am always amazed at what you discover when viewing the pics later that you didn't see while taking them

If I do see hummers this winter, I will definitely email you to get a bander's info. But, I'd hate for them to make the trip if I'm not sure they are here.

Rhonda
Never stop enjoying life,
Rhonda

Rhonda Furlong
Englewood, Florida
Zone 10a
Quote
Like
Share

Joined: August 21st, 2012, 2:43 pm

September 28th, 2016, 10:54 pm #15

5 Hummers yesterday and have only seen one today, some have obviously headed further south? The male with missing retrices has been replaced by a pretty handsome adult male (with no missing feathers) that is using the same feeder. Haven't seen any other hummers today. Nothing really unusual but it does confirm migratory behavior even here in central FL. "Here today gone tomorrow".

A neighbor in MA also reports that most of the Hummers left last week, about the same time we left. She has only seen 2 stragglers in the past few days, none yesterday.

Activity in the south central MA indicates that most hummers have departed the area.

Rhonda and others in West-Central FL.

Master banders that visit FL are listed on the Hummingbird Research Inc. site

http://www.hummingbirdresearch.net/p1.html

Just look on the left side of their 'Home Page', and click, 'Find the nearest winter hummingbird bander', for their names and contact info.
For an idea of their activities and where they have banded hummers during the winter months check on the link 'Hummer updates'! This is useful info since it gives you an idea of the birds that have been banded in your area during the winter months.

Of note is a Rufous banded in Tallahassee and later recaptured in Alaska 5 months later (3500 mi. flight distance record). Noted in the 'Hot News' link.

Camera I generally use is a Nikon D4, shutter speed of 10-11 fps. Will record up to 200 frames at that speed but hummers never stay around that long!



Joe M.
Lakeland, FL
Quote
Like
Share


Confirmation of reply: