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Friday, May 11, 2012

Fluffy Rufous Hummingbird - UPDATE


An excerpt from this site:

Vancouver Island is home to only two species of Hummingbird, the Rufous and Anna’s Hummingbird. The Rufous Hummingbird is distinguished by a buffy cinnamon colouration on its body and tail. Like all hummingbirds, male Rufous have iridescent throat feathers, called a gorget. When the light catches it, the male Rufous gorget is a striking orange-red colour. Females are greener, and have spots of iridescent feathers on the throat. The Rufous is by far the most common species in our area. They arrive with the first flowers of the spring, breed here, and depart by mid summer.
The Anna’s Hummingbird is much more elusive. The Anna’s male has a fuchsia-pink gorget and a green back. Both males and females have white over the eye, and no hint of cinnamon. Anna’s have only been in BC for around 60 years. This native of California has gradually moved north, expanding its traditional range. Anna’s reached Vancouver Island in the mid 1940’s, and a breeding record was confirmed in 1958. Since then, Anna’s have been steadily increasing on Vancouver Island, especially during the past 5 years.

The reason I was interested in finding out more information about hummingbirds, is because I saw this fluffy one sitting just above the hummingbird feeder.  I was surprised to see it still perched there while I went to get my camera and returned.  Perhaps it's a young Rufous Hummingbird.  I'll try and find out.

UPDATE: Message received re identification of hummingbird below:
The bird in your photo is a full adult male Rufous Hummingbird.  Note the dark gorget (neck and head feathers) and the bright rufous-red colouring down the sides and back of the bird.  Females would show a green back with some rufous-red colouring down the sides.

Rufous Hummingbirds spend the summer months in the area to breed.

12 comments:

  1. You are so lucky to see these. I hope that you do identify the young one in your photo. Flighty xx

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    1. Hi Flighty ~ Yes, fortunate indeed! Turns out it isn't a young one after all, but an adult male according to the local bird experts :) Enjoying some lovely weather at last here, so feel fortunate there too! Hope you're experiencing similar sunshine.

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  2. Wow! A hummingbird sat still! Lucky you!

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    1. Mo, I was amazed to see him still stilling there when I returned with my camera. I have never noticed one before that looked like this...usually they are sleeker looking with a greenish tinge, which must be the females. Glad to share him with you.

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  3. A lovely photo of a delicate little beauty! I do wish we had them here....maybe if I say it enough times... ;-)

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    1. Thanks ShySongbird! I think you will wish them there eventually :)

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  4. Wow! How handy to get a confirmation of identity. And interesting to learn that there are only two kinds in your area. Makes me want to research my area... Don't think I've ever seen fluffy looking Rufous types.

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    1. Although I am able to identify quite a few birds now, there are still many that stump me, so it is indeed handy to have a local birdwatching club supply identification. It would be interesting to know what types of hummingbirds frequent your locale!

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  5. I don't think I've ever seen a photo of a humming bird at rest before now. Great you got a positive identification. It's always nice to know exactly what you have photographed.

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    1. Yes, John, I was amazed it sat for so long! Each time I learn an identification, I become curiouser an curiouser to learn even more...

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  6. Lovely little birds they are. We only have one species of hummingbirds around here and that's the Ruby throat. I'm glad you found out his identity.

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    1. Hi Hilary ~ Yes, they are lovely little birds ~ interesting to learn about them and where they live, etc. I didn't realize that you have only one species of hummingbirds. Handy to have a local bird club that is happy to supply identification from photos :)

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