BASICS


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).

Friday, November 17, 2017

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Fall Droning at the sanctuary

Here are some recent drone sequences showing fall colors and Long Island Sound.









Saturday, October 14, 2017

Feeding in the Rain

Just at sunset (it's now setting over western Long Island) the rain  stopped.


The rain today reminded me of these videos of hummers in the rain





Thursday, October 12, 2017

spot the hummingbird


One of the last videos of the 20017 season. At first it's difficult to spot the hummer!

Monday, October 9, 2017

Calliope?


from http://www.audubon.org/field-guide/bird/calliope-hummingbird

I got word that a Calliope hummingbird - the US's smallest - from western states such as as Oregon and Washington - has been spotted in Baiting Hollow, though not (yet) at the sanctuary, so I was keeping an eye out for it, without success. But instead here are a couple more videos from september, featuring favorites such as jewelweed and shrimp plant.









Thursday, October 5, 2017

Ladies and More Monarchs

I have never seen so many Painted Ladies as the last few days, and lots of monarchs too.








Sunday, October 1, 2017

Hummer!

After several days with no sighting I was happy to see one hummer several times, visiting the feeder hanging in the doorway of the front cabin:


While waiting for him, I filmed a lot of monarchs












Thursday, September 28, 2017

shrimp plant; a hint of fall color

I did not see any hummers on wednesday morning, and only 1 the previous day, so it looks as though the end of the season is near. Shrimp plant (Justicia brandegeeana) is aptly named because the pink/red bracts look like shrimp-tails. The nectar-containing flowers are white and much appreciated by hummingbirds. However the variety at the Sanctuary has a pink lower lip on the flowers. The first video shows a hummer feeding at shrimp plants with an occasional sip at purple porterweed. The second video is from a drone flying over the tree-tops to the west of the sanctuary. Some of the maples are already beginning to turn red.



Sunday, September 24, 2017

Friday, September 22, 2017

perching on porterweed stalk, with a ring of gold


perching on a porterweed stalk, with a ring of golden pollen around the base of the bill.

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Fuchsia Attack



This afternoon this guy was trying to rest after feeding at a fuchsia plant but got attacked. 2X slo-mo

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

still some hummers after Jose: closed to humans but not to hummingbirds!

A couple of hummer clips from this morning - still at least 2, enthusiastically chasing each other, despite the strong winds over the last 24 hours, which cause the feeders to swing violently, even in relatively sheltered spots, as shown here. Unfortunately the general public can no longer visit the sanctuary, as a result of a lawsuit by a neighbor, but I will be regularly updating this blog with hummingbird news, videos and images, both at the sanctuary and elsewhere. Stay tuned!





there was also a much bigger bird soaring in the wind:


and here are some clips of the waves on the beach below the sanctuary







Monday, September 18, 2017

We enjoy the quiet weekend

Claire and I watched the remaining hummers and walked the clean beach this weekend.



Friday, September 15, 2017

4k vid; Now Permanently Closed to the General Public - Surrender?


A perching hummer filmed at the sanctuary recently in 4K.

We have now closed permanently to the general public, in accordance with the terms of a lawsuit settlement I reached with my neighbor Kamal Bherwani. The title of the printed version of a recent Newsday article about the sanctuary closing was "Surrender" but I would describe it more as a strategic retreat. The sanctuary will continue to exist but I will no longer invite members of the general public - only my friends and other personal guests. However, part of the existing sanctuary may well be taken over by the Seatuck Association, and will hopefully be open to the public on a much more extended basis than I have attempted. Details will be announced at this blog.
Although the southward migration is now in full swing, there are still several hummingbirds at the sanctuary, competing for flowers and feeders as they fatten up in preparation for the long journey ahead. I also am "fattening up" - or at least earning my living as a part-time professor at Stony Brook University, and turning more of my energies and enthusiasm toward my students and collaborators. But then as the winter sets in, I and my wife Claire will be migrating south to the sunny isle of Eleuthera - fortunately spared by Irma's recent close passage (though Jose still churns 400 miles to the east of our beach) - and once again surrounded by magical hummingbirds.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Beak rubbing and preening


Hummingbirds usually carefully clean their bills after a feeding session.

No more available appointment dates. After September 15 we will permanently close to the general public, because of a lawsuit brought by a neighbor. However, we hope to re-open next year under a new owner, the Seatuck Association. If you would like to help make that happen, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to them, mentioning the Hummingbird Sanctuary. 

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Manorville Vids; Dates





Manorville is a good location for hummingbirds, mainly because it has extensive woods. I visited a friend, Dominick, and filmed some of the hummers frequenting his feeders. Dominick later visited the sanctuary and I will feature some of the photos he took here in my next post.

Currently available appointment dates are as follows:  tues sept 12, pm only; wed sept 13, am only; thur sept 14 am,pm; fri sept 15 pm only. am = 10-12.30; pm = 3-5.  Please email paul.adams$stonybrook.edu to request an appointment. If you could walk up the half-mile from Sound Ave, please let me know. After September 15 we will permanently close to the general public, because of a lawsuit brought by a neighbor. However, we hope to re-open next year under a new owner, the Seatuck Association. If you would like to help make that happen, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to them, mentioning the Hummingbird Sanctuary. 

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Footless; Dates


Today's brilliant photo from the sanctuary is by Bob Immoor.

Currently available appointment dates are as follows:   tues sept 12, pm only; wed sept 13, am only; thur sept 14 am,pm; fri sept 15 pm only. am = 10-12.30; pm = 3-5.  Please email paul.adams$stonybrook.edu to request an appointment. If you could walk up the half-mile from Sound Ave, please let me know. After September 15 we will permanently close to the general public, because of a lawsuit brought by a neighbor. However, we hope to re-open next year under a new owner, the Seatuck Association. If you would like to help make that happen, please consider making a tax-deductible donation to them, mentioning the Hummingbird Sanctuary. 

Hummingbirds are traditionally placed, together with swifts, in the order "Apodiformes", meaning "footless". This is a reference to their very small feet, which are not used for walking. However, as Bob's picture (and Mark's picture in my previous post) beautifully illustrate, their feet are far from totally lacking, or even particularly small. However when flying they are held tucked under the body, like a plane's undercarriage, and not very obvious. Hummingbirds now have their own order, the Trochiliformes, which is part of a "super-order", the Apodimorphae. This is an extremely large order, exceeded in species richness only by the songbirds.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

New Dates


recent photo by Mark Schaller

Visiting dates (by appointment only: paul.adams!stonybrook.edu) for sept 2-8: ; wed sept 6 10-12.30 only

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Hummers Facing Off; Rockport (Texas Gulf Coast) Hummingbird Festival; dates



This recent sanctuary photo by Shirley Chan shows a typical face-off between 2 hummingbirds. They are very similar, and very aggressive, to each other. One hummer is perched on the stem of porterweed, perhaps the best of all hummingbird plants, obtainable only at lihummingbirdplants.com

Rockport is in the news because of the devastation caused by Hurricane Harvey. But it was already famous for hummingbird enthusiasts because of it annual festival, which was going to be held this year on sept 14-17. It's timed to coincide with the peak of the southward migration on the Gulf Coast, when millions of hummers congregate in the town waiting for a favorable  north wind to speed their way across the Gulf of Mexico. At times the daytime sky there can be black with the crowds of hummingbirds. With a favorable tailwind they can make it across the Gulf and into the Yucatan peninsula in 14 hours of nonstop flying at cruising speed of 30 mph. But if the wind should turn to the south or storms brew they are probably doomed -  though fishing boats and oil rigs can offer help to some - their decks can be covered in resting hummingbirds trying to outlast the weather. My guess is that a hummer has only about a 50% chance of making this crossing both ways - but they have no choice, and for thousands of years enough survive that the species flourishes.
Here at the sanctuary hummers are feasting at flowers and feeders, fattening up to fuel the incredible journey they soon face - each one alone and usually for the first time. They need to double their weight to attempt the gulf crossing - and in the course of that epic flight their weight will fall back to half the take-off weight, as they consume fat to power their wings. Everything about them is a miracle, but almost everyone on Long Island can get to see them in their own back-yard (or, until sept 15, in mine!), with a little effort and love. I will soon (middle of next week) be posting new available dates for visiting (by appointment only) for the remaining 2 weeks of the season.
New visiting dates are posted at the previous post ("Lawsuit").

Friday, August 25, 2017

Lawsuit


recent sanctuary photo by Bob Immoor. No current visiting slots available - more will be posted soon.

Here is the "Motion for Summary Judgement" filed by the plaintiff's attorney Anthony Tohill. This Motion requests the Judge to decide "summarily" (without trial) the lawsuit in the plaintiffs' favor. Essentially it marshals supposedly very strong arguments why the case should be decided against me, based largely on the testimony I gave during "Discovery",  the process where defendants, plaintiffs etc give preliminary sworn testimony. After summarizing some of the testimony I gave, the Motion proceeds to the crux of the matter, claiming (Paragraph 25) "Plainly defendant Paul Adams is operating a commercial business in a residential zoning district".

So, what was this damning testimony that showed I was operating a commercial business? One might assume that a "commercial business" involved some form of financial transaction, but I testified that I neither charged an entry fee nor requested a donation, and no testimony or other other evidence was offered to the contrary.  In fact none of the testimony cited in the Motion (such as it being possible to park as many as 15 cars on various parts of my 3.4 acre property, or that there are chairs scattered over my property) seems at all relevant to the central issue of whether I was operating a commercial business.
I was totally baffled by this Motion - it seemed Kafka-esque, completely devoid of logic or sense. If these were their strongest arguments I had clearly entered a realm where normal rules of evidence and reason did not operate. It was at this point that I realized that I could not continue the lawsuit, and that I simply had to get out, for my own sanity and health. So I agreed to close down the sanctuary to members of the public - at least to the 40% of visitors who I testified were strangers. It seems to me that I have a perfect right to invite to my residential property individuals with whom I am not already personally acquainted but who might become friends, based on shared common interests etc. However, it appears that this is not so.
If this is a typical example of the American justice system, woe betide us!

Visiting dates (by appointment only: paul!adams@stonybrook.edu) for sept 2-8: ; tuesday sept 5,  am, pm; wed sept 6 am only; thur sept 7 am, pm; fri sept 8 pm only (am = 10-12.30; pm = 3-5).

Walking to the Sanctuary


Another beautiful image from Bob Immoor - rosebud salvia.

Under the terms of the lawsuit settlement, a maximum of 6 cars is allowed at the sanctuary. However, if you are willing to walk up Terry Farm Rd (about 0.6 miles) you could visit even at times that have filled up already (and are therefore no longer posted). To arrange a visit, you still need a confirmed appointment for a specific date/time: email paul.adams#stonybrook.edu. All slots for visits by car are now full for the coming week, but slots for the first 2 weeks of september will be posted here soon.  We will then permanently close to the public (though of course all my friends, old and new, will be welcome to visit next summer when I'm in residence).

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Fred?


No more vehicular visiting opportunities next week.
There's still an adult male at the sanctuary, possibly Fred, who arrived here in late april. He needs to focus on fattening up for the migration rather than chasing out intruders.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Sanctuary on Channel 12


another slo-mo vid showing feeding at cardinal vine

Doug Geed, who covers the East End for Channel 12, spent the morning at the sanctuary on monday. As he requested I invited several sanctuary enthusiasts (from as far as Staten Island: thanks Maryam) for him to meet, including past "volunteers" (thanks Gini and Chuck) and representatives from Great South Bay Audubon and Nature and Wildlife Photographers of Long Island, both of which have been visiting the sanctuary for over 15 years. Apparently the results of his efforts can be seen at
 if you can login (which I can't). Dates for visiting next week will be announced very soon.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Lawsuit settlement


Hummingbird feeding at flowers of yellow coral honeysuckle (and ignoring its own reflection); 4x slo-mo

According to the settlement of the lawsuit against me by one of my neighbors (Kamal Bherwani), and certain other individuals, I may only open the sanctuary to my "public" invitees during the period july 20 - sept 15.  I put the word "public" in quotes because the issue as to what is "public" was never clarified. Let us assume here that it refers to persons who respond to my public announcement that I will receive visitors on particular days, whether these persons are friends, acquaintances or merely those with an interest in hummingbirds who I would like to meet. Prior to the settlement I only welcomes such general visitors during the month of august, so paradoxically the settlement actually enlarged visitation. I believe the plaintiffs stipulated this "restriction" because they were totally unaware of the dates I was actually open. This expansion of general period was offset by a stipulation that I could only receive visits 3 and one half days per week (the half day being at the weekend). I am at liberty to choose the exact dates, and I try to judge when the weather would be most favorable, and the noise from helicopters and seaplanes minimal, within constraints set by my personal private activities. The settlement of the lawsuit, to which, under considerable pressure, I agreed, also stipulates that all "public" visitation to my property will cease after sept 15 2017.  In my next post I will turn to the lawsuit itself.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

No current visiting opportunities; cardinal vine


Here's a slo-mo view of a hummingbird feeding at the little red flowers of cardinal vine (a type of morning glory), and perching when it can. The purple flower is porterweed - also a hummer favorite (get it only at LI Hummingbird Plants).
There is no more availability for next week (aug 21-25) but one morning or afternoon (to be decided but not aug 27 am) next weekend will be available. Please bear in mind that under the terms of the lawsuit settlement we can only open 3 1/2 days a week, either 10-12.30 or 3-5 or sometimes both. The exact times are determined a few days ahead by weather and other factors.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Dates for next week

Things are filling up real fast for next week, but we still have 3 weeks more after that so hang in there! Today (friday) terrific rain but everyone who braved the storm saw hummingbirds and stayed more or less dry! All appointments are rain-or-shine.


recent photo by Isaac Lebowitz. ALL DATES NEXT WEEK NOW FULL!  You must now wait to  request permission (paul.adams#stonybrook.edu) to visit the sanctuary until new dates are posted.  You can arrive/depart any time within the designated period (no early birds) but you must have a confirmed reservation. See right-hand column of this blog for more information.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Canna Attack

Fully booked this week.  Plenty more visiting dates, until sept 15 after which we permanently close,
 will be posted here soon. For more info, see the right-hand column of this blog.
Hummingbirds put on some good shows for intrepid visitors this afternoon, despite the drizzle. But here's a clip from  couple of days ago, showing a hummer feeding at Canna flowers. Look carefully at the very end - as often happens this hummer is driven off by another.


Sunday, August 13, 2017

Hummer/Bee in slo-mo; visiting



Fully booked this week.  Plenty more visiting dates, until sept 15 after which we permanently close, will be posted here soon. For more info, see the right-hand column of this blog.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

weekend and next week


Photo by Judy Lindo (https://www.flickr.com/photos/judylindo/). The flower is Canna.

We will be open to visitors (by appointment only, email your request with selected date/time and your first and last name to paul.adams+stonybrook.edu): wed aug 16 am, pm,  (am = 10-12.30, pm = 3-5). Plenty more visiting dates, until sept 15 after which we permanently close, will be posted here soon.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

a tiny ruby

This boy is wearing just one tiny ruby on his throat.


No more availability for this week. Dates for the weekend and next week will be posted soon. Please see righthand panel of this blog for more details.

Thursday, August 3, 2017

visiting next week


photo from the sanctuary by Sung Kim. The flower is rosebud sage (Salvia involucrata "Bethellii"). The sanctuary will be open to visitors (by appointment only: paul.adams^stonybrook.edu) sunday aug 6 am, and tues, wed, (aug 8,9) am,pm, thur (aug 10) am and fri (aug 11) am (am = 10-12.30, pm = 3-5). Please see righthand panel of this blog for details.

Monday, July 31, 2017

no slots left this week


recent sanctuary photo by Sung Kim. No more visiting slots this week but 3 days will soon be posted for next week. Under the terms of the lawsuit settlement with a neighbor, we can only open 3 days per week and one half day at weekends, and must close permanently after sept 15.

Friday, July 28, 2017

perching to feed


flying burns a lot of energy and means they have to feed a lot, which in turn makes hummers very eager to defend their patch of flowers, even if it entails flying a lot. To save energy, they will perch whenever possible, and will try to do so when feeding if there's a convenient flower stalk.
Available visiting slots next week (am= 10-12.30, pm=3-5): mon july 31 am,  tues aug 1 am, pm; wed aug 2 pm, thur aug 3 pm only : email paul.adams%stonybrook.edu with your request.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Like father like son

Sanctuary visiting procedure: pick a specific ANNOUNCED date/time, email Paul, he will send Directions/Instructions and Waiver, which you must read. If you are ok with these, email him again and he will send the necessary confirmation. It's a hassle for all but keeps things smooth. The sanctuary will be open to visitors july 26 (am,pm), 27 (am,pm) and 28 (am) (by appointment only: email paul.adams&stonybrook.edu); am = 10-12.30 and pm = 3-5. We will be open a half-day at the weekend (TBA), and three days every week until sept 15 (TBA). Please try to request an appointment at least 12 hours ahead, so there's time to do the necessary steps. 2 phone-photos from Susan Boyce, who visited tuesday afternoon.
There's a young male, Fred Junior who I call Fredino, whose sparring with Fred (his putative dad). Here's video from wednesday afternoon:


Looks like rain saturday so we will open, by appointment, sunday morning (July 30 10-12.30)

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Visiting Procedure

Sanctuary visiting procedure: pick a specific ANNOUNCED date/time, email Paul, he will send Directions/Instructions and Waiver, which you must read. If you are ok with these, email him again and he will send the necessary confirmation. It's a hassle for all but keeps things smooth. The sanctuary will be open to visitors july 26 (am,pm), 27 (am,pm) and 28 (am) (by appointment only: email paul.adams&stonybrook.edu); am = 10-12.30 and pm = 3-5. We will be open a half-day at the weekend (TBA), and three days every week until sept 15 (TBA).Please try to request an appointment at least 12 hours ahead, so there's time to do the necessary steps. 2 phone-photos from Susan Boyce, who visited tuesday afternoon.


Sunday, July 23, 2017

open days this week


We will be open to visitors (by appointment only: email paul.adams&stonybrook.edu) july 25 (pm only) , 26 (am,pm), 27 (am,pm) and 28 (am only) ; am = 10-12.30 and pm = 3-5. We will be open a half-day at the weekend (TBA), and three days every week until sept 15 (TBA). PLEASE DO NOT REQUEST DATES THAT HAVE NOT YET BEEN POSTED AT THIS BLOG AS AVAILABLE - I DO NOT KEEP TRACK OF RANDOM REQUESTS

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Activity picking up

We are starting to see more activity, just in time for the first visitors, with juveniles giving Fred a lot of work, and sometimes escaping his vigilance. Here's a video from yesterday (saturday) showing a juvie feeding at various types of salvia (all currently available at lihummingbirdplants.com)
.

We are open sunday morning 10-12.30 july 23 - shoot me an email to reserve. Dates for next week will be announced shortly.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

first open day of season

while I was waiting for the first visitors of the 2017 season (no-shows) I filmed Fred feeding at cardinal flower:


Cardinal flower is a Long Island native perennial that grows along river banks such as the Peconic and the Nissequogue. It's mainly pollinated by hummingbirds. When the bird feeds, the anther (the tiny stalk projecting above the 2 red petals) snaps down and dabs a patch of pollen onto the forehead. The purple flower is porterweed - a hummingbird magnet, available ONLY at lihummingbirdplants.com.
I'm seeing a couple of young hummingbirds appearing, though Fred chases them away, and I hope there will soon be more.

Visiting slots are available july 21 10-12.30 and 3-5 (but pm only a couple) and sunday july 23 10-12.30. Please email me if you (and others in the same car) would like to visit then, though it's still rather slow. Dates for next week will be posted soon.

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

We are open july 20pm, july 21am,pm, july 23 am

Visiting slots are available july 20 3-5, july 21 10-12.30 and 3-5 (but only a couple) and sunday july 23 10-12.30. Please email me if you (and others in the same car) would like to visit then, though it's still rather slow. Dates for next week will be posted soon.





Sunday, July 16, 2017

The flowers are ready and waiting

First visits of this season (by confirmed appointment only) at the sanctuary on the afternoon of thursday july 20 (3-5 only), and friday july 21 10-12.30 or 3-5. Many more dates on subsequent days will be announced here on a rolling basis, based on weather etc. However, under the terms of the lawsuit settlement, only 3 days a week and one half weekend day will be available. The sanctuary will permanently close to the public after sept 15.
So far hummingbird activity at the sanctuary is low, and it's probably best to wait until next week or later. But to make an appointment for one of the above 3 slots  please email me (paul.adams#stonybrook.edu) the announced date/time would like to visit. Please do not request an appointment for any other time, wait until your preferred time is posted at this blog. I will then send you instructions for visiting, which you should review carefully, letting me know that you agree to the rules, and then I will confirm your appointment. It's a bit of a hassle but I want to ensure that our last opening season is orderly and successful.












Fred welcomes visitors (by confirmed appointment only) at the sanctuary on the afternoon of thursday july 20 (3-5 only), and friday july 21 10-12.30 or 3-5. Many more dates on subsequent days will be announced here on a rolling basis, based on weather etc. However, under the terms of the lawsuit settlement, only 3 days a week and one half weekend day will be available. The sanctuary will permanently close to the public after sept 15.
So far hummingbird activity at the sanctuary is low, and it's probably best to wait until next week or later. But to make an appointment for one of the above 3 slots  please email me (paul.adams#stonybrook.edu) the announced date/time would like to visit. Please do not request an appointment for any other time, wait until your preferred time is posted at this blog. I will then send you instructions for visiting, which you should review carefully, letting me know that you agree to the rules, and then I will confirm your appointment. It's a bit of a hassle but I want to ensure that our last opening season is orderly and successful.

Saturday, July 15, 2017

First Opening Dates/Times


Fred welcomes visitors (by confirmed appointment only) at the sanctuary on the afternoon of thursday july 20 (3-5 only), and friday july 21 10-12.30 or 3-5. Many more dates on subsequent days will be announced here on a rolling basis, based on weather etc. However, under the terms of the lawsuit settlement, only 3 days a week and one half weekend day will be available. The sanctuary will permanently close to the public after sept 15.
So far hummingbird activity at the sanctuary is low, and it's probably best to wait until next week or later. But to make an appointment for one of the above 3 slots  please email me (paul.adams#stonybrook.edu) the announced date/time would like to visit. Please do not request an appointment for any other time, wait until your preferred time is posted at this blog. I will then send you instructions for visiting, which you should review carefully, letting me know that you agree to the rules, and then I will confirm your appointment. It's a bit of a hassle but I want to ensure that our last opening season is orderly and successful.

Sunday, July 9, 2017

A Couple of Announcements

A couple of announcements. First, the Baiting Hollow Hummingbird Sanctuary will be open on certain specific dates (to be determined) falling in the period july 20 - sept 15. Under the terms of the lawsuit settlement, this will be the last year in which the sanctuary will be open to the general public. Even this year we will only be open 3 1/2 days a week during that period, the half-day being on the weekend. The exact dates will be decided on the basis of weather etc, and announced a few days ahead on a rolling basis at bhhummer.blogspot.com - NOT at this FB page. Please wait until you see the date you would like to visit posted at the blog, and then email your request to Paul Adams at stonybrook.edu. Paul will then respond with further information and once you have acknowledged reading that information, he will then confirm your appointment. No visiting without a confirmed appointment - it could land Paul back in court, or worse. Requests to visit will be ignored unless they are for an already posted slot (though of course Paul's personal friends can request to visit at any time). 
come and see Fred and his friends and enemies!


The second announcement concerns the future of the sanctuary. The lawsuit settlement allows Paul to deed his property to an existing environmental organization, for use as a hummingbird sanctuary open to the public or otherwise. He is currently discussing this possibility with the Seatuck Environmental Association, an outstanding group focussed on wildlife preservation and public environmental education. Whether these discussions will actually lead to the preservation of the existing sanctuary, in part or in total, is unclear. However, those who would like to see the sanctuary continue in some (perhaps better) form could consider making a donation to Seatuck (at https://www.seatuck.org/index.php/support/donate-now). If you do choose to donate, please consider making your donation to Seatuck in honor of the Hummingbird (first name) Sanctuary (second name). Even if these discussions do not lead to the preservation of the sanctuary, you would be supporting a vibrant, Long-Island-based environmental organization, and your donation increases the likelihood of a successful outcome. More to follow!

Thursday, July 6, 2017

Very big hummer lands next door

here it lands:


and then it takes off:


The man that lives next door is Kamal Bherwani, who I first met in the office of his lawyer, as part of his lawsuit against the hummingbird sanctuary. Unfortunately the suit never came to trial, since after 3 years of battle I no longer had the resources (financial and mental) to continue, and was forced to settle. Under the terms of the settlement I have to close the sanctuary to the public after this season (which runs july 20  - sept 15), though of course my private guests may continue to visit. I will soon be posting at this blog the exact dates and times for visiting. When you see an available slot time that suits you, please email me with your request.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Back to Fred


I added a small bowl feeder (Aspects "HummBlossom", available at lihummingbirdplants.com) to the dead branch, hanging over the back deck, where Fred often perches, and he seems to like it. Much of the time he is on the tip of the dead pine tree that allows him a sweeping view of the western valley, where I cannot get close enough to film him well.



But he sometimes leaves this spot, either to patrol the rest of his territory, or else to visit his perch over the deck, from which he will often briefly visit this little bowl feeder, which allows him to stand while feeding. Here's the perch just above the feeder. At then end of the clip he dives down to the minibowl feeder. I over-exposed the video so although he's in silhouette against the sky you can see a lot of detail. So far this summer I'm only rarely seeing other hummers - Fred is keeping them out.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Indigo Bunting

I filmed this indigo bunting at Pettengill Farm, near Freeport, Maine, during a trip north 2 weeks ago.


It's an idyllic place where one hears only the sounds of nature.

 
















Thursday, June 29, 2017

Fred on twig


this HD video was shot shortly before the 4K video I posted on june 22.  On my Retina screen  you can definitely see slightly more detail at 2160p 94k) than at 1080p (HD) - but unless you were to view it on a large-screen UHD TV, it does not seem worth while.

Wednesday, June 28, 2017

A New Blog: reevesbeach.blogspot.com

Years ago I used to run, but had to give it up because of hip problems (bursitis). In Eleuthera this winter I started to run again, but on the beach, and because the sand is soft, my hips are cushioned and it was good to get my heart and lungs pumping again. So on returning to Baiting Hollow, I decided to try running on the beach below the sanctuary. In the past I've tended to ignore the beach, for a variety of reasons: the trash, the ruts, the vehicular traffic, the loud music and other noise (including gunplay), the sometimes unsavory characters, etc etc. But in the early morning the beach is usually quiet or even empty. And on my walk back from my run, I started to pick up the trash - a sisyphean task! Then I decided to start a facebook page ("Reeves Beach") to document the natural beauty and human ugliness of this magnificent but damaged beach. But after a short while I decided that the blog format suits me best - not least because I can upload pictures straight from my phone to the blog. It's at reevesbeach.blogspot.com. Turning seventy, I realize what's most important to me, in my remaining time, other than family and friends, is enjoying, respecting and preserving the natural world - especially the parts where I live, political correctness, diplomacy and even sometimes politeness be damned. The following images are from today's run, and are more in the nature of a test of the phone-to-blog process. This hummingbird blog will resume soon!


before I climb back uphome, I sit and catch my breath and enjoy the view.

Today's haul of trash


sometimes the good not the bad












reevesbeach.blogspot.com

Sunday, June 25, 2017

The latest sunset of the year.

on the summer solstice june 21 the day is the longest of the year, and this is how it ended here on the bluffs at the sanctuary;


Friday, June 23, 2017

drone not hummer

I got a DJI Spark drone for my birthday with which I'm hoping to shoot some interesting footage, both at the sanctuary and elsewhere.
This is the drone that was recently featured in the NY Times. It comes with its own HD camera mounted on a gimbal, and can be controlled using a smartphone. Here are some preliminary results.



Unfortunately (or perhaps fortunately since I'm a complete beginner), the range one can operate the drone is quite limited using a cell phone, less than 100 feet. But it's enough to practice with. In addition there's a (known) bug when using an Android phone, which causes one to lose the connection with the drone. Lots to learn! 
It tends to be very windy here but the drone seems to handle gusty wind remarkably well: when it's hovering and a gust comes one can hear the motors revving very strongly but it remains in place. In the second video the voice-over, which I recorded during filming, was added afterwards in
post-production, so it's not perfectly synchronized.