Debbie Reeves is putting up two more feeders right
now--that makes five. Don't know about trumpet vines but the location is
in tall oak-hickory forest, however there are numerous homes in the area that
might be offering tasty treats to a hungry hummer. Hmmm!
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Tuesday, June 17, 2008 12:27
Subject: Re: Broad-tailed update
This information may be totally irrelevant, but when we
needed to watch a feeder for a Plain-capped Starthroat in Arizona, a
self-proclaimed expert advised us that our chances were best early in the
morning and late in the afternoon. His wisdom was that hummingbirds get
protein from insects in flowers, and the Starthroat was probably visiting
flowers and/or roosting somewhere in the shade during the day but would fuel
up at the feeder at the beginning and end of each day.
We followed his advice and, sure enough, the Starthroat
showed late in the afternoon.
If the Arizona guy's hypothesis is correct, why are
there so many Rubythroats around during the day? I once watched my feeder very
closely for most of a day. I thought I had one male and one female using it.
By the day's end, I had identified 10 separate individuals using the feeder --
two males (which chased each other) and 8 immatures and/or females, which I
disdinguished from one another by subtle differences (e.g. one individual had
a few tiny red gorget spots). The Rubytroats that are around during the day
may represent a much larger number, some of whom are off pursuing insects
during or resting the day.
If the Broad-tailed is still around, he may by now have
worked out a route that still takes advantage of Bill Rowe's offering, but may
also include other sources -- both flower and sugar water.
Are there any other feeders in the neighborhood? How
about Trumpet Creeper flowers?
The Audubon Society of Missouri's Wild Bird Discussion Forum
ASM Fall Meeting: Sept. 26-28, 2008 at Osage Beach, MO
More information: http://www.mobirds.org