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Just Humming Along

posted 1/8/2017 11:10:54 AM |
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tagged: birds, nature, photography, fun, outdoors

Living on the top floor of my condo, I have a lot of birdlife to watch as they swoop and soar over and off the roof. Now that I no longer have radiant heat in the ceiling (yes, that was so stupid), the birds aren't leaving as much of a mess on my deck as they were, thank goodness!

In the summer, I noticed hummingbirds flying up to my deck, undoubtedly due to the many clay pots full of begonias. Due to the warm fall we had, my begonias were still blooming late into November. We're paying for that warmth now, with one of the snowiest and coldest winters we've had in years.

I figured with the cold weather, the hummingbirds would have gone elsewhere - but not so. At least one flies up every day to my eye level, hovers on the other side of the balcony, then zooms off. As the arctic winds blasted this area, I decided to buy a heated hummingbird feeder to give my daily visitor a lukewarm drink. Well, I waited and waited and waited. No feeder.

Finally, they got back to me and told me they'd been inundated with orders due to the icy temps and were filling them as they came in. Mine was due in last Tuesday. Well, wouldn't you know, I ended up with a beast of a flu on New Year's Eve and unable to do anything all week. Breaking down and going to the doc on Thursday and a double dose of antibiotics for bronchitis, and Friday I was able to take my orders out and pick up my feeder. Yay!

In the meantime, we'd been blasted again with four days of 90km winds and frigid temperatures, the wind chill dropping it down to -20. Yeah, that can not ever come back. No sign of the hummer. Just before New Year's I had gone for a walk around the lake and a little hummer was sitting on the lower railing of the boardwalk, all fluffed out.

Anyway, I hadn't seen my hummer for days and hoped they'd found some warm place to hide and something to eat in this freezing weather. I made some sugar water on Friday night, and got up early and hung up my feeder and plugged it in yesterday morning. And waited.

I didn't have to wait too long, and one of the hummers landed briefly on the feeder, then took off. I don't know if it drank anything or not, it wasn't there long. About 11:00 am, the usual visitation time, a hummer landed on the feeder and was there a long time in hummingbird minutes. Yay!

What's cool, is that the feeder glows red in the dark due to the light in it to keep the nectar from freezing. The little chickadees are back again, hopping along my deck, now the winds have died down. A blue heron flew by the other day, on it's way to the lake and an iridescent Stellar's Jay will frequently sit on my deck railing, noisily announcing it's presence.

I'm so lucky to live where I do and I love being able to see so much birdlife right in the heart of the city. I'm so glad my little hummer is back and I'm looking forward to seeing the feeder full of hummingbirds. At this point, even one visitor is a bonus, though.

More snow is called for today, so I'm thinking a jaunt to the lake for some photos will be a good idea. Yesterday, my first day out since New Year's, I drove east to the valley where the cliffs are now just a mass of icicles and so incredibly beautiful. There was too much cloud cover yesterday, so no sunset to turn the cliffs and ice gold, but it was great just to be outside.

So there you have it - and life just keeps humming along....

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Jan 8 @ 11:17AM  
One of my uncles has a Hummer, real gas guzzler but can go anywhere.......Oh wait a minute, I think I've read this blog all wrong.

Jan 8 @ 11:21AM  
I don't believe I'd want to be feeding that for free!


Jan 8 @ 11:24AM  
I have a lot of birds too, but they seem confused. Right now, there are big flocks of boat tailed grackles, robins, crows, and starlings headed North way earlier than usual. The weather has been so warm that it is almost like a false Spring, with the birds and flowers earlier than schedule.

This morning there was a half inch of ice on the water the bird bath. I hope not too many early buds or early birds got frozen. The birds have down jackets, so they will probably are OK, despite the howling wind that brought the cold.

But now it is warming, the cold front has passed, and the weather is clear and will warm steadily until the next frontal passage.

Jan 8 @ 11:51AM  
I should order me a hummingbird feeder although I've never seen one in this neighborhood. I loved your blog, so glad you enjoy your new home.

Jan 8 @ 12:17PM  
The various species of hummingbirds we have here are migratory. Can't imagine how many times one little hummingbird beats his wings from his home in my mother's Connecticut backyard all the way to Mexico!

Jan 8 @ 12:20PM  
humm humm hum hum hum

Jan 8 @ 2:57PM  
Just an up-date today - the hummingbird feeder is seeing a LOT of action this morning. There's not more than one at a time feeding from it, but there's a steady flow of hummers. Yay! It's so cool seeing their tiny little iridescent bodies drinking from it and I have it hanging where I can see it all the time.


Jan 8 @ 6:32PM  
Your balcony will soon become the hummingbird capital of your region.
"Get your sugar fix here. First sip is free."

Jan 8 @ 8:23PM  
You are taking pictures, right?

Jan 8 @ 8:24PM  
When we lived on the 3rd floor the ex set up a tripod to catch pics of the little hummers.

Jan 8 @ 8:59PM  
Fay - no, I haven't been taking photos. I have vertical blinds on the windows and I'd have to pull them right back to get a decent photo. Even so, I'm not sure how well it would turn out shooting into the light through the window. I guess I won't know until I try it, but at this point, I've just been enjoying watching them.


Jan 9 @ 8:37AM  

nice blog!! ~kudos~

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