Thursday, September 3, 2009

Arrivederci. Adiós. Au Revoir. Auf Wiedersehen

Two weekends ago when we left for a show, we took down the tube feeders and replaced them with several bottle feeders. We had so many hummers zipping around, they were emptying all the tubes several times a day, so we wanted to make sure they would find enough food to hang around until we got home. Sure enough, on Monday we had our standard feeding frenzy and swarm of hummers.

This past weekend we did the same thing. But on Monday, we had fewer hummers. And noticeably absent are the red-gorgeted males. It appears that the migration back to the homeland has started. The males leave first. The females will follow over the next few weeks. This year's juveniles will be the last to depart. They fly individually and no one shows them where to go. What an incredible journey!

About two weeks ago we also lost our male orioles. Only females were eating the grape jelly. And now this week, nothing is eating the grape jelly. It appears that they, too, feel the forces of nature.

Woe is me!

Hummingbird fact for today: Feathers lost accidentally within a few weeks, while those damaged but not lost are replaced during the next normal molt.

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