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Friday, December 28, 2012

Hummers and other happenings

Christmas was a wonderful family time ~ three sons stayed over, gobbling up a full turkey dinner along with steamed pudding, tarts, etc.  It was a cozy and comfortable time :)  It did snow during the day to add a sprinkling of magic, before disappearing, although at higher elevations it caused some apprehension for travellers.

Inside and outside:

Readers have mentioned their interest and delight in seeing photos of hummingbirds on my blog.  The appearance of them during the winter months had some people wondering!  Of the 356 species of hummingbirds in the world, here are only two species of hummingbirds on Vancouver Island:  the Rufous and the Anna's.  The Anna's Hummingbird is a year-round resident in this area.   They feed on nectar, sap, and small insects.  There are still some blooms around, and I've noticed one frequenting the Winter Jasmine at my front door.  I found suggestions online about keeping hummingbird feeders from freezing, which I have noted, although I haven't tried bubble wrapping yet ;)  I replenish the liquid frequently and have added more sugar to the solution as suggested.

This appears to be either a female Anna's Hummingbird or a juvenile, having a little rest in the front Magnolia bush and catching a few fleeting rays on its front!  It looks like the one on this site.

Interesting little hummingbird facts gleaned from the links:

  • What do you call a flock of hummingbirds? Few animals have so many applicable terms, and none so beautiful. Instead of calling them a flock, choose between a bouquet, a glittering, a hover, a shimmer, or a tune of hummingbirds.
  • Hummingbirds have tiny legs and can neither hop nor walk, though they can sort of scoot sideways while perched

I have often noticed a furtive little Wren in the bushes.  Lately it has ventured out occasionally to join the other birds near the feeders.  It has become quite brazen and, after several attempts to figure out the contortions necessary, has learned the technique of properly accessing the food in the suet cage...

A view of the mountains from the front door:



 and the weather forecast for the coming week, which sees us into the new year.  I see some sun :)

I wish you all a Happy Healthy New Year :)  Snuggle up and keep warm!


  1. Hi Glo, So sorry to be late with my Christmas wishes but I'm so glad to see you have enjoyed a happy family time, how nice that you had a sprinkling of snow to add to the festive magic. Your Christmas tree looks lovely, a traditionally decorated tree is one of my favourite things at Christmas, that and the carols.

    I love your indignant little Wren :-) and as I'm sure I have said many times, of all the birds in the world I would most like to see in this country it is hummingbirds, such delightful little creatures. I am amazed you see them there in cold weather! If that is the case I wonder why we don't have them here, (perhaps our flowers aren't exotic enough)....I do wish we did!!!

    I loved your most recent poem Glo, I am always so impressed with them.

    I wish you and your loved ones a very Happy and Healthy New Year :-)

    1. Thanks so much, ShySongbird, for your cheerful comment. I appreciate how you share which details of my posts that you enjoyed :) I fiddled around with the hummingbird feeder today, as you will see from my most recent post. Wishing you and yours a Wonderful New Year!

  2. Thanks for the hummer info. We only have one species around here and it definitely migrates so it's a kick to read about your year round visitors. Lovely and whimsical post as always, Glo. They never fail to bring a smile to my face.

    Wishing you and yours a wonderful, safe and Happy New Year.

    1. It's been interesting learning more about the resident hummingbirds, thanks to the curiosity of my readers, such as yourself :) Glad my post brought a smile ~ All the best to you and yours for a terrific New Year!

  3. A most enjoyable, and informative, post. Good to see that you had a good Christmas, and some festive weather to go with it.
    Happy New Year! Flighty xx

    1. Glad you enjoyed the info, Flighty and thanks for your Happy New Year wishes. The same to you :)

  4. I'm glad you had a good Christmas, I don't envy you trying to feed three strapping sons! I bet they have hollow legs!
    I LOVE your hummingbirds, I know little about them so it's lovely for me to see your pixs and find out a little more about them. I really like glittering and shimmer......sounds right for such magnificent birds

    What a beautiful set of pictures of the the battle of the wren and the cheeky squirrel! I'm amazed you got such good pixs of the wren, ours darts about so quickly it's like trying to capture a bat!
    I do love a wren, I'm always surprised how loud they sing given how small they are.
    Your mountains are beautiful, it must be lovely to watch them in the ever changing weather!
    Have a wonderful New Year and thanks for all your amazing posts!xxxxx

    1. Thanks Snowbird ~ Let's just say there wasn't much in the way of leftovers after the three of them had chowed down ;)

      I feel I am getting acquainted with the winter birds ~ they are taking on certain personalities, either that or I'm spending too much time indoors peering at them out of the front room window ;) The wren has become quite outgoing. Some of the birds stay put when I go outside, kind of looking over their shoulder as if to say, 'Oh, it's just you', and carry on eating.

      It is very picturesque here, especially now that the mountains are snow capped. I'm glad you enjoy my pictures :) Always interesting to see another part of the world ~

  5. I love that wren's look of consternation! I did not know you could have hummers hanging around year 'round. And I think a 'bouquet of hummingbirds' sounds lovely. So glad you had a cozy and delightful Christmas with your sons. Much better than being outside in that snow! Happy new year, Glo.

    1. Hi Nikki ~ When I see the birds looking head on, they do seem to be expressing some opinion :) Anna's Hummingbirds do stay around all year, but I've never seen a 'bouquet' of them yet ~ a great adjective for sure. Happy New Year to you too!