BASICS: "Hummingbirds.....where is the person, I ask, who, on observing this glittering fragment of the rainbow, would not pause, admire, and turn his mind with reverence..." (J. J. Audubon).
This is a blog about my summer life at the Baiting Hollow Hummingbird Sanctuary, at my winter garden, Calypso, in the Bahamas, and aspects of life in general.
This private sanctuary is now permanently closed to the general public, as a result of a lawsuit brought by a neighbor. Only my friends and personal guests may visit (paul.adams%stonybrook.edu).
Wednesday, July 31, 2013
Open Today (Wednesday) am, pm; Mimosa blight
YOU PARK AND VISIT AT YOUR OWN RISK!
Open today am (9.30-12.30) and pm (3-5.30). See Directions to the right of this post.
We will be open tomorrow thur aug 1 both am and pm. Friday we will open either am or pm, depending on the weather: rather than opening am we might instead open pm - check blog.
Yesterday afternoon was the first opening of the season, and despite the late and unexpected announcement we had about 15 visitors. The weather was as good as it gets, and we were treated to a period of sustained hummer activity, with repeated dramatic chases in and out the treetops and sometimes just a few feet away. One youngster seems to have selected a dead mimosa tree as a perch from which to defend a small patch of flowers and a single feeder, and resolutely attacked a persistent rival.
Mimosa trees (Albizia julibrissin) are beautiful in flower and foliage and perhaps the best hummingbird tree around (the only rival being the red buckeye Aesculus pavia, which blooms very early). Unfortunately they get a blight and can suddenly die. I planted this one as a very small sapling about 15 years ago and it rapidly became a tall tree, so it's failure to leaf out this year was sad - but at least it's still useful to hummingbirds as a perch. Because of this blight problem they are difficult to find in local nurseries. Fortunately close by I have another somewhat smaller one, which I hope will resist its brother's infection.
The above image was taken yesterday by a visitor, Robin Leuthardt. The hummer is feeding at Salvia involucrata "Mulberry Jam". Here's another of her photos from yesterday, with a Spicebush Swallowtail butterfly, which were also active. Thanks Robin!