New Poster Here!

misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)March 24, 2014

I've been feeding hummingbirds since the 1970's, and, as I recall, I posted a few times on this forum years ago. Since it's been so long, you regulars wouldn't remember me. I'm mainly into butterflies, raise the caterpillars of many types, but I also love those hummers, planting for them and maintaining their feeders.
I saw my first male ruby throat late this year on the 19th of March, but a female showed up at the regular time, on the 23rd of March. There are now at least two males, because they're already zapping each other - things are normal.

I had the pleasure of feeding a male rufous hummingbird in the winter of 2012-2013 - he stayed all winter and molted before he left. That was quite a pleasure! I didn't get a rufous or other overwintering western hummer this past winter.

Anyway, I just wanted to introduce (or re-introduce) myself.

Here's a picture I made of the rufous hummingbird not long before he left -

Sherry

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shillanorth Z4 AB

Welcome back! Maybe I will see your little guy about mid-July on his way back to you! Butterflies and hummers - is there anything better to watch on a summer`s afternoon? I will be waiting `til May for those little beauties to show up but do appreciate any photos you lucky southerners can send in the interim!

Sheila

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 3:25PM
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janalyn(sw BC)

Welcome! We have had about half dozen Annas who wintered with us...the rufous should be arriving in two or three days. Am very grateful to all those who had feeders up for them as they made their way up the coast to their breeding grounds here in BC.

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 6:31PM
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rvird01

Hey Sherry. Welcome...I enjoy your butterfly wisdom and photos. I'm sure that many of your bf nectar plants are also loved by hummers.
Rhonda

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 6:36PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Thanks all!

Sherry

    Bookmark   March 24, 2014 at 11:05PM
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morz8(Washington Coast Z8b)

Hi - I hope you enjoy your season of hummingbirds again this year.

We had three overwintering Annas, same as last year. And, on March 15, added two rufous, both male. Last season there was just one daily rufous that showed up in March, he was gone again in July and I missed him....tiny flash of red with a great big attitude :)

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 11:46AM
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Robert (zone 7a, Oklahoma)

That Rufous is gorgeous! I'm always hoping that one day one might just show up in Tulsa to surprise me. :)

I see from your profile that you also like passifloras.
I'm hoping this year I'll get to sniff 'Preciosa' and P. venusta.
Passion flowers are gorgeous. Wish I had room for more!

-Robert

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 11:57AM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

I thought he was gorgeous, too, Robert!
Yes, I love those passionvines! I got interested in them originally, because they're the host plant for variegated fritillaries and gulf frits (and other heliconian butterflies) and started branching out a bit. I'd like to plant more, but most aren't cold hardy. We don't have many freezes down here, but one each winter is all it takes to ruin your outside planted tropical passionvines. So, I mostly stick with P. incarnata, the good ole hardy maypop. Still, I may be tempted to try another one this year.

morz8, congrats on your overwintering annas! I love their rose red throat color, at least that's what their gorget looks like in pictures - beautiful!
When my rufous stayed here, it was interesting how differently the sound was he made when he slowly approached the feeder. Ruby throats never make that sort of 'tinny' sound. My boy was very passive, but then, at the time, there were no other hummers around for him to compete with. Also, as I recall having read, their pre-molt personalities tend to be calmer.

I recognized your post name right away, Rhonda. Only you know what a butterfly nut I am! :)

The annas hummingbirds must be pretty common in winter on the west coast, janalyn? I really enjoyed feeding and watching that rufous, so we're glad to help them out down here!

Sheila, I agree, there's nothing better than butterflies and hummingbirds! I would like to get a picture of a ruby throat doing his big "U" in the sky in front of a female. I heard it going on yesterday, but didn't have my camera with me. Even when I do have my camera, by the time I get it out of my pocket and ready to shoot, the display is already over.

Sherry

    Bookmark   March 25, 2014 at 5:49PM
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janalyn(sw BC)

Over the past six years, the Anna's are being seen frequently here in winter in Vancouver. Apparently the bird experts think it is because more people are keeping feeders up in winter.
Saw the first Rufous *big smile yesterday and am wondering if it is a returnee because he is sitting and guarding at a spot where one hung out all the time last year. I have to use five feeders at various locations in the front and back of the house to prevent fighting lol.

I feel so sorry for people who do not get joy out of simple things like hummingbirds, butterflies and flowers. They miss so much beauty in the world.

    Bookmark   March 26, 2014 at 12:44AM
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mboston_gw

Welcome to this site, Miss Sherry. I have been watching a female Ruby all day long feeding about every 15 minutes. I have one other, an adult male who is still molting. He has been around all day to. Yesterday, I had a beautiful adult male but haven't seen him today.

I posted on the Butterfly Forum this morning. Been ages since I visited there.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 8:12PM
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mimidi1

Miss Sherry we have been hummingbird and butterfly friends for years.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 5:31PM
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misssherry(Z8/9SE MS)

Good to hear from Mary and Diane again!

I've been working in the yard for hours today - the weather is beautiful! I planted some hops vines, hoping that the question mark butterflies will find them - they like to lay eggs on hops vines better than any other plant around here.

The male hummers are at the feeders and zapping each other all over the place, but I haven't seen a female in a few days. I did hear a male doing the mating dance the other day, so I guess they're still here.

Something of interest regarding hummingbirds - I planted a new butterfly bush last year called 'Orange Septre'. It's VERY different from regular B. davidii. The flowers are brilliant orange and arranged on the plant differently from regular butterfly bush. It kept most of its leaves over the very cold winter, and started blooming over a month ago. One of the male hummers defends 'his' butterfly bush as much as he does the nearby feeder. Even the butterflies can't use it, they're nectaring on the blueberry blossoms. This 'Orange Septre' gets real big and doesn't bloom in summer, but I thought I'd pass it along that I've found a plant that blooms in very early spring when other blooms are scarce, and hummingbirds love it! The male that 'owns' it visits the blooms constantly.

Sherry

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 5:52PM
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mimidi1

Sherry I thought about you yesterday as I burned my Dutchman's Pipe vine. The Pipevine swallowtails loved it but the vine had started spreading into my hayfield. I could not let that happen. DH had asked me when I planted it did I know what I was doing. It is so very invasive when planted in a open area.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 2:06PM
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