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Friday, August 24, 2012

Like Father, Like Son

I had some days off work this week and was able to spend some time just sitting on the patio and watching the butterflies and birds coming and going in the garden. (OK- I did some gardening too, but I'll blog about that later!)

I've been watching at least three hummingbirds zipping about the garden this week, from the Vitex to the Flame Acanthus to the Crepe Myrtle and  to the feeders.

I assumed I had a male and a couple of females, but it wasn't until I looked at the photos that I realized I was wrong.

Yes, we have at least one female, and we certainly have a male -- as this one spent at least five minutes flashing his beautiful ruby throat for me to photograph today. 

(As always, you can click on the photos to see a larger version.)

But it wasn't until I saw the photo below enlarged on my computer screen that I realized this wasn't the female I thought it was.

See that little red dot on his throat?  I Googled "hummingbird with red dot on throat" and discovered on that while young males and female both look like adult females, the juvenile males can get a red dot on the gorget in late August/early September.

This is the first time I've ever seen a juvenile hummingbird, or at least the first time I have ever known I was looking at a young one. 

I wonder if I'll find a nest next year?

Words and photographs by Jayne Wilson, Green and Serene, Jayne's Country Garden.


Birdwoman said...

Nice pictures and nice catch on the juvenile hummer. They can be hard to distinguish from the females.

Jayne said...

Thanks Dorothy. I'd never noticed the little red dot before. He just happened to face the right way when I was pointing the camera at him :-)

Corner Gardener Sue said...

What fun! I haven't seen the hummingbirds that frequented the garden last year. I don't remember when they were here, but it seems it was late August or so.

Jayne said...

Thanks Sue. It may be my imagination but it seems that the hummingbirds arrived a lot earlier this year than they have in the past. Not that I'm complaining!