Hummingbirds!

A little less than two weeks ago I added a hummingbird feeder to the peach tree. It took less than 48 hours and I had my first visitor and so began the often missed attempts at getting pictures. Man, those creatures are hard to capture! I put the feeder in a spot on the tree that I could easily photograph through the freshly cleaned french door, but I am still working with a pretty basic use camera with a pretty slow shutter speed. I’d have the shot lined up and by the time it got done with it’s process, the bird would have buzzed off. Or, all it would take was for one of the other birds in the yard to be spooked off by me and the hummer would fly too. The thing is, I long ago learned that since hummers move at such a high rate of speed, their world does too, and slow movement does not register with them as it does with other birds. So you can stay relatively still, or use smooth, slow movements near them and they wont spook. My problem was the other damn birds!

Anyhow, I got lucky this weekend. I was able to capture both a female and male in pretty good view:

 

Female Anna's Hummingbird, resting on branch closest to window - sweet!

You might ask how I knew this was the female – well, you’ll the contrast in a second, but notice the size of the patch on her throat. That’s the spot that, caught in the right light, would shine a bright pink. On the female it is very small and often quite hard to spot if the sun is not shining on it. Her whole head and front are uniformly a light gray.

 

Female at the feeder - completely green back

Just as I was wondering to myself if I really had only spotted a female so far, this little guy appeared:

Male Anna's Hummingbird

See the difference? Completely dark head that even in the only partly sunny light is giving off that tell tale pink shine.

Success!

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One comment

  1. Robin · November 1, 2010

    Wow! Great job! Even with a fast camera hummingbirds are difficult to capture.

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