BASICS: Long Island gets hummingbirds throughout the summer, but not many. The Baiting Hollow Hummingbird Sanctuary and Garden may be the best place on the island to see them.
However we are ONLY open in august and ONLY by appointment, at specific "slot" times which are posted at this blog.

You need a printed, dated SIGNED WAIVER, which will be sent to you to confirm your appointment, along with directions and instructions. We are always closed 12.30-3. You visit AT YOUR OWN RISK - there are steep narrow uneven paths and dilapidated chairs and structures, and parking is limited: carpool if possible. Be careful not to trespass on neighbors, as indicated by ropes and signs. Hand-held cameras only please, except by previous arrangement. There is no admission charge BUT YOU MUST BRING a signed dated liability waiver form. Dated waiver forms are provided only by request, in conjunction with your appointment. Private groups (eg photographers, birders, gardeners) can request their own dedicated session.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

one from Baiting Hollow

Juvenile ruby-throated hummingbird visiting pink porterweed in Baiting Hollow - a short video from 2014.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Male Woodstar closeup

Sorry I've negelected the blog, partly because of internet problems. But here's footage shot just today, of a male bahama woodstar hummingbird perched on a twig. Note the purple/black gorget. No soundtrack because shot at 2X slo=mo.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

fall scenes from Baiting Hollow

Here are a couple of short videos I shot in Baiting Hollow  in the fall, after the last hummer had left.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Male Bahama Woodstar Flashing; an attack

Male Bahama Woodstar hummingbird perched on a twig. Most of the time his gorget appears dark, but a couple of times when he turns to the camera it flashes a brilliant purple. The next video shows a brief encounter between 2 hummers; the attacker is probably a male

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy 2015 everyone! Male Woodstar closeup; lawsuit

Here's a male Bahama Woodstar hummingbird doing his thing on a twig of a Royal Poinciana tree (the spectacular flowers are long over, and now you see the huge hanging seed pods). He's guarding a very large clump of Firecracker, which I zoom out to show at the end of the movie.

I hope that all my readers will have a fabulous hummingbird season in 2015 (it only seems a short time since the Millennium!). While everyone is waiting for the first hummers of the year to arrive, late april or early may, I''ll be posting various hummer and garden vids to cheer you up. I wish I could post something substantive about the ongoing lawsuit, but my lawyer insists that I keep mum. Suffice it to say that it's still bubbling along, and casting shadows beyond the difficult year that's just past. Onward ho!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Listen to Male Woodstar hummingbird buzzing

I recently bought myself a Christmas present - an external directional microphone which mounts on top of my Canon Vixia G30 videocamera. Yesterday I tried it out for the first time, hoping to pick up the characteristic buzzing sound that the male hummer makes as he visits flowers.  It works! He's not buzzing all the time - I think only when he's either accelerating or hovering in certain ways., andyou have to listen very carefully, using a proper speaker or headset (there's also some background noise)As in my previous movie, he's visiting firecracker - not the same very large clump as before, but a smallerclump that's just outside the back door of our house "Seastar", where I'm staying at the moment.
There are actually 3 houses at Calypso: Seastar, Woodstar and Morningstar - see We move around between the houses depending on whether family or friends are staying with us, but on first arrival here we tend to start in Seastar. All a bit complicated and impractical, but there's logic behind it.
Bear in mind that the bird was about 12 feet away from the microphone, and the buzzing is quite subtle at that distance; I will try to get a much better, closer recording.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Happy Christmas! Hummingbirds are back!

Well, actually it would be better to say that I'm back amongst the hummingbirds, here at our winter home Calypso on the Bahamian out-island Eleuthera. Yesterday I settled down near a very large clump of firecracker (Russellia equisetiformis) where I knew that a male Bahama Woodstar hummingbird (Calliphlox evelyni) often (every 15 minutes or so) visits. Here is one of the videos I took.

The video is 2X slo mo, as usual. You can see his brilliant magenta gorget from time to time as he turns towards the camera. These hummingbirds are endemic to the Bahamas but are very similar in general appearance and behavior to the rubythroat, the color of the gorget being the most strking difference. Firecracker is an excellent hummingbird plant which I sometimes have in Baiting Hollow too - but of course it's tropical and must be brought indoors for the winter.

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Hyssop mission

Continuing with my stash of videos from the summer, here's another with a backdrop of Long Island Sound. This time the hummingbird is focussing on mexican hyssop, Agastache cana, which has a wonderfully mint-flavored leaf. He's ignoring the white flowered version of Salvia greggii, though this has nectar too.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Alice Dupont with hummer

Here on the front deck Mandevilla "Alice Dupont" climbs up a trellis. If you look carefully in the center you'll see a hummingbird feeding at a partly hidden feeder. These gorgeous flowers are nectarless, though once I saw an inexperienced hummer get his head stuck in one (they explore everything) and had to shake him loose.