BASICS


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.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

visiting soon over; males, old and young; Lady Di update; noise meeting

Best availability: thursday afternoon 3-5.30. We will be closing at the end of the month. We will be probably open for at least 2 slots at the weekend but details are not yet finalized. Meanwhile if you want to visit this year, try to make one of the available (posted) slots (see to the right).

Although we are now in full swing migration, and the adult males are the first to leave, we still have at least one at the sanctuary, photographed yesterday afternoon  by Bridgette Kistinger:


Bridgette also snapped a young male, with a single "drop of blood" on the throat (just one adult gorget feather poking though):


The juvenile males will develop a full set of brilliant red gorget feathers on their wintering grounds in Central America.

Lady Di's chick in Manorville continues to grow rapidly. Here's a nice view showing the chick's stubby beak poking above the top of the nest, and the brilliant green lichen that decorates the nest and blends in with the lichen on the oak twig supporting it.


Here's another view showing the chick completely filling the nest.


Thanks Dominick Gerace for these pictures.

Reminder: there's a very important meeting in East Hampton tonight (LTV Studios, 75 Industrial Rd, Wainscott at 6.30). See the Quiet Skies Facebook page for more info. Big money aviation interests are already mobilizing to intimidate the EH Town Board, many of whom were recently democratically elected to regain local control of their airport. 



Monday, August 25, 2014

Pink Porter-weed now available! Important helicopter noise meeting wed evening

The fabulous hummingbird magnet Pink Porter-weed (Stachytarpheta mutabilis ***) is now available at Long Island Hummingbird Plants. This plant is even better than "Black and Blue", my number one recommendation, and on a par with rosebud salvia (which I do not recommend solely because it's more difficult to find than B and B). Here's a recent picture taken at the sanctuary by Kerry Harrison:


It's a tropical and won't survive the winter outside, but it's a tough plant (after all, it's a weed) and will survive neglect indoors over the winter. It's very difficult to find, and you should seize this opportunity!

The sanctuary will be closed after aug 31, but we still have good availability for appointments for visiting slots  thur am and pm, and fri pm.

There will be a very important meeting about helicopter (and other aircraft) noise created by commuter traffic from Manhattan to East Hampton Airport (KHTO) on wed evening (aug 27) , starting at 6.30, at the LTV studios at 75 Industrial Road, Wainscott, E. Hampton. The East Hampton Town Board will be hearing public comments about the noise problem, anf they probably have more control over possible solutions than anyone else.

This problem affects almost everyone on Long Island to some degree. However it's particularly important for the BH Hummingbird Sanctuary: the noise from these flights stops normal conversation and makes it impossible to hear the subtle buzzing and chirping of the hummingbirds. It's gotten steadily worse over the last ten years, as the Hamptons and Manhattan have each become the exclusive domain of the rich, who can afford the astronomical cost of these polluting flights. The rational and decent solution to the traffic problems on the south fork is to improve the roads and railroad, not to inflict harassment and stress on tens of thousands of people who had sought the peace and quiet of the east end, and who do not live in or near East Hampton. But of course the US no longer invests in infrastructure or indeed its future, merely in corporate welfare and military adventures.

I know it's a long drive out to Wainscott but if you can possibly do it wed evening and speak about the noise problem, either at the sanctuary or at your own home, I would be very grateful. This might be our one chance to convince the EH Town Board to do the right thing. I chose the land on which the sanctuary sits for the extreme quiet that existed there 23 years ago, never thinking that a location so far from everything could become the target of noise bombardment by people commuting between Manhattan and KHTO, rather than via the obvious direct over-Atlantic route, but via LI Sound and the North Fork. It's difficult to beleive that something so crazy could come to pass, but it has, and this tear alone helicopter traffic (the worst but not the only offender) has increased by 60% compared to last year. If this continues I will have to leave Baiting Hollow, once an oasis of calm.


Saturday, August 23, 2014

Helicopter Noise Meeting; Lady Di's Chick growing fast; flowering maple vid with attack

There will be a very important meeting about helicopter (and other aircraft) noise created by commuter traffic from Manhattan to East Hampton Airport (KHTO) on wed evening (aug 27) , starting at 6.30, at the LTV studios at 75 Industrial Road, Wainscott, E. Hampton. The East Hampton Town Board will be hearing public comments about the noise problem, anf they probably have more control over possible solutions than anyone else.

This problem affects almost everyone on Long Island to some degree. However it's particularly important for the BH Hummingbird Sanctuary: the noise from these flights stops normal conversation and makes it impossible to hear the subtle buzzing and chirping of the hummingbirds. It's gotten steadily worse over the last ten years, as the Hamptons and Manhattan have each become the exclusive domain of the rich, who can afford the astronomical cost of these polluting flights. The rational and decent solution to the traffic problems on the south fork is to improve the roads and railroad, not to inflict harassment and stress on tens of thousands of people who had sought the peace and quiet of the east end, and who do not live in or near East Hampton. But of course the US no longer invests in infrastructure or indeed its future, merely in corporate welfare and military adventures.

I know it's a long drive out to Wainscott but if you can possibly do it wed evening and speak about the noise problem, either at the sanctuary or at your own home, I would be very grateful. This might be our one chance to convince the EH Town Board to do the right thing. I chose the land on which the sanctuary sits for the extreme quiet that existed there 23 years ago, never thinking that a location so far from everything could become the target of noise bombardment by people commuting between Manhattan and KHTO, rather than via the obvious direct over-Atlantic route, but via LI Sound and the North Fork. It's difficult to beleive that something so crazy could come to pass, but it has, and this tear alone helicopter traffic (the worst but not the only offender) has increased by 60% compared to last year. If this continues I will have to leave Baiting Hollow, once an oasis of calm.

Here are a couple of new pictures of the nest in Manorville. The first shows that the baby now almost fills the nest (the remaining egg still unhatched), and the second shows Lady Di feeding it. Note that the chick's beak is short and stubby, unlike the adult's. Thanks Dominick!


Here at the sanctuary there's good availability aug 25 pm, aug 26 pm, aug 27 pm and some at other posted times

And here's a recent movie (4X slo-mo) showing a hummer feeding at a bell-like Abutilon blossom, and then, near the end, being attacked by another hummer. Even in slo mo it all happens extremely fast, but you can see how the attacker flares his tail in warning.


Friday, August 22, 2014

Autumn Sage

It's cool once again - too cool for me - and thoughts turn to the looming fall. So today I''ll focus on autumn sage, Salvia greggii **. This grows naturally in dry, rocky, soil, southwest Texas and northern Mexico, but it does surprisingly well on Long Island, especially if it has good drainage. It often comes through the winter, and I now have had a small bush for 15 years, growing in a crack in a south-facing sheltered concrete slab. Here's a recent photo, by Greg Olanoff.



Typically it's red or pink, but there are a lot of varieties around, including the pretty "Hot Lips", with a a red-lipped white flower.
Crushing a leaf unleashes a wonderful aromatic smell. Salvias generally have aromatic smells, attractive to humans but unpalatable to deer, and it's this feature that makes my hummingbird garden here in woods infested with deer possible. Here's Salvia guaranitica *** (the commonly-available selection "Black and Blue") again (see yesterday's post) in another great photo by Greg Olanoff.


To end up here's another cute photo from Greg. Note the golden pollen at the base of the bill.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Hummingbird/Salvia article in today's NY Times

Best upcoming availability: sunday aug 24 pm

There's a nice article in today's  NY Times by Anne Raver, about salvias and hummingbirds. She features my number one recommendation Salvia guaranitica "Black and Blue".

The photo below is by Mia Globoschutz (16 years old) and shows "Purple Majesty", a hybrid of S. guaranitica and S. gesniflora.



Wednesday, August 20, 2014

visiting procedure reminder; new photos

Just a quick reminder of our visiting rules, which almost everyone is obeying (thanks!).
1. You must have a confirmed appointment with a corresponding waiver issued by me (paul.adams*stonybrook.edu).
2. Further instructions will be sent with your confirmation.
3. Request appointments only for posted "visiting slots" - see to the right of this post.

More slots will open soon but we close sept 1 (though private visits by old and new friends might still be possible).


Photo by Sheldon Pollack, aug 18. The flower is the salvia "Purple Majesty" **, which is a hybrid of S. guarantica and S. gesniflora.


Photo by Wei Tang, aug 15. Yellow trumpet vine (**)

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Lady Di report




Photo from yesterday by Huzhong Cai. The flower of the trumpet creeper is quite deep and the hummers often perch on the lip and thrust their whole head in to feed.

Lady Di's chick continues to grow, and the remaining egg remains unhatched, as I expected. Photo by Dominick Gerace from yesterday.



Monday, August 18, 2014

good availability; Cuphea


Today's photo was taken 2 days ago at the sanctuary by Dan De Mato (DanielDeMatoPhotography.com). It shows a hummer feeding at Cuphea ignis "David Verity" (**), often known as cigar plant or firecracker (though many others also bear this name).

We have good upcomingavailability wed pm, thur am and pm. More slots will be posted very soon!

Saturday, August 16, 2014

only 1 egg has hatched; upcoming availability


It turns out that unfortunately only one of the eggs in Lady Di's nest has hatched. This new photo shows that what looked like a beginning hole on the second egg, back on aug 13, was in fact just a piece of debris: the egg is still intact and may now fail to hatch. Possibly the recent heavy rain prevented normal hatching. Anyway the remaining hatchling is growing well, and it will be interesting to see how Lady Di deals with the unhatched egg. I think she will just ignore it.

The best upcoming availability is for tues pm, wed pm and thur (see "Visiting Slots" to right of this post).

Here's a recent sanctuary photo, by Kathy Baca, showing a juvenile male (2 dark spots on the throat).


Thursday, August 14, 2014

Lady Di Feeding her brand new young; petition; updated availability



Lady Di is a female hummingbird raising a new and late brood 12 feet up an oak tree in Manorville. The first egg hatched aug 12 and the second a day later. Dominick, the photographer, had to sit 20 feet away from the nest - any closer and she would just buzz him until he left. You can see Lady Di delicately feeding her tiny hatchlings. She's giving them a regurgitated mix of insects and nectar. The chicks will now rapidly grow, and she will be kept busy catching insects. But for the moment while they are still tiny she spends a lot of time just sitting on them, keeping them cosy.

Don't forget to sign the petition to Riverhead Town to keep the sanctuary going.

Best slot availability: monday and tuesday pm