|At the Boyce Thompson Arboretum|
This year has been a revelation for me in a lot of areas that surround my life. Today, I'm going to make it official and "out myself" as an amateur birder. It was inevitable. I've always loved birds, but I really started getting into it more during our trip to Panama. Ivan, if you are reading this, you knew it was going to happen:) This is a series of shots from over the year in Panama, around Arizona, and in my backyard.
|Outside my dining room window|
First off, if you want hummingbirds, you need to get a feeder. This pic above is from my dining room window. If you are beginning, keep your feeder somewhere close to your windows so that you enjoy the action. The feeders are much cheaper than the regular bird feeders that require an expensive mixture of bird seed:) Hummers are attracted to reds and oranges and that's why most feeders are red. Don't put red dye in the water and DO change out your feeder every week to prevent bacteria from building up. You don't want your new friends to get sick.
The recipe is simple. Boil 4 cups of water. Add one cup of sugar. Mix together. Let cool and add to feeder. Any leftover, put in fridge for switch out later on. The solution will last one week in the fridge. Simple and easy. And if you begin feeding the hummingbirds, remember to be consistent and regular with your feeding. So no missing weeks:) I kind of look at them as my adopted friends. In fact, the birds now wait for me to come out and switch up their food for them and it makes me happy. I love birds but I don't like seeing them in cages. Birds were meant to fly.
I now am a proud gardener of 4 hummingbird families that swarm around the feeders. If you live in Tucson or surrounding areas, you absolutely MUST try this out. We are home to MANY hummers and you'll be rewarded for your efforts.
|Shots taken in Panama|
I have the feeling that this year is the beginning of my urban wildlife gardening in the Old Pueblo. I also tend to think they are super intelligent creatures that are very territorial. They've gotten so comfortable that they'll fly right next to me while I'm watering the garden and just hang out. When I put the feeder out with fresh juice, they'll feed right next to me. Of course, several of these little guys are the hatchlings from our nests on the property.
So what's your personal experience with these little critters?